Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday requested that the White House grant temporary protected status to Haitians who have fled to the U.S. 

The senator's request comes after a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit the Caribbean island nation on Tuesday afternoon. The earthquake has reportedly caused widespread devastation in the impoverished nation.

Gillibrand took to Twitter, saying:

My hope is that the WH will grant temporary protected status to Haitians who fled to the US due to past violence and disasters in Haiti.

Temporary Protected Status is typically granted by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to foreign nationals if conditions in their home country prevent them from returning safely.

The agency can grant the status in cases of ongoing armed conflict, a natural disaster or other extraordinary condition.

Cross-posted to the Twitter Room.