Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Ernesto Escobedo


Immigration policies such as temporary protected status and deferred enforced departure can serve as suitable humanitarian solutions to help displaced individuals. Notwithstanding, when implemented in the course of many years, the uncertainty and stress of living in limbo can pose significant challenges to beneficiaries and create a multifarious scenario for government leaders. This qualitative study examined the experience of Liberians, a group designated with temporary immigration protection in the United States since 1991, who have consequently formed lives in the United States while in temporary status. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the effects of temporary immigration policy, implemented as a long-term solution on the security of Liberians and their successful integration in the United States. The study was designed with a case study approach, which yielded a breadth of data collected through semistructured interviews of 9 members of the Liberian community. The research question aimed to understand the perceived effects of long-term implementation of temporary immigration policy on Liberians and their ability to feel secure and integrate into U.S. society. The data were analyzed using content analysis and revealed that irrespective of the challenges and angst of living in limbo, and evidence of some degree of marginalization, Liberians have progressed in many ways and are contributing members of U.S. society. The social change implications of this research include providing a voice to Liberians and others in similar circumstances and the potential for policymakers to consider how temporary immigration policies are implemented in the future.