Everything you Need to Know about Public Charge in 2020
On January 27, 2020, after being blocked by lower courts, the United States Supreme Court temporarily set aside the preliminary injunctions that prevented DHS’ public charge rule from taking effect, making it more difficult for low-income immigrants seeking to come to or trying to remain legally in the United States.
The public charge rule is designed to wage war on immigrants by weaponizing health, housing, nutrition and other essential programs that allow hardworking moms and families to thrive. It forces families with children to choose between reuniting with loved ones and putting food on the table.
By putting admission to the United States and green cards at risk if an immigrant’s family uses Medicaid, Medicare, SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), or Section 8 rent vouchers, this rule will increase child hunger, child poverty, homelessness, poor health outcomes, and racial disparities in our country. It could affect 26 million people, including one in four children in the United States. That’s why more than 266,000 people (including 4,000 MomsRising members) filed comments on this proposed rule, the vast majority of them in opposition to it. (1)
The real damage is being done by the “chilling effect” resulting from the Administration’s deliberate and coordinated efforts to terrorize families of color. In late Spring 2019, the Urban Institute published research on the chilling effect already happening in 2018. Their study shows that about 14 percent of adults in immigrant families reported chilling effects, again these are people who are discouraged from applying or receiving public benefits for which they are eligible because of immigration related consequences.
Fight Fear With Facts!
It’s understandable that families are worried. The Trump administration is trying to send the message that immigrant families don’t belong here. The best way to fight back is by knowing your rights and making the best decisions for you and your loved ones. The more we know about our rights, the harder it is for the Trump administration to make us afraid.
Public charge does not apply to everyone. Again, lawful permanent residents applying for citizenship are NOT subject to public charge. See in the following images if the public charge rule applies to you.
The information provided below is based on the PIF Campaign’s analysis of the final public charge rule on inadmissibility and is not legal advice.
We do not want to see children forced to go without food, health care, safe housing and other essential supports. Check out these great resources on public charge to help better equip you with what you need to know to make the best decision for yourself and for your family.
Visit protectimmigrantfamilies.org to stay updated about the latest developments regarding the public charge rule and have access to materials that will help you to fight against the public charge attack on immigrant families. https://protectingimmigrantfamilies.org/know-your-rights/
Listen to the National Immigration Law Center’s policy analyst Jackie Vimo explaining how the public charge rule will harm families and children for years to come. https://www.facebook.com/MomsRising.org/videos/1446244678847937/
Fear of family separation is not limited to the US borders. For children in mixed-citizenship-status families, this is a stressful daily reality. Listen to Lina Acosta Sandaal explaining how we all can support children dealing with anxiety and fear. https://www.facebook.com/MomsRising.org/videos/890750751293310/
For information about a specific case, please contact an immigration expert. To find help in your area, visit www.immigrationadvocates.org/nonprofit/legaldirectory.
We Will Continue Fighting to Protect Immigrant Families
The invisible wall is real and public charge is just one large brick (other bricks are the Muslim and refugee bans, recent rule against pregnant women, worksite raids, and more) Together, we’re strong, and together, we can build a country where nobody has to live in fear and all families can thrive. We won't stop fighting to protect immigrant families — and it’s a fight that, together, we can win.
We will be updating this blog post with information on any changes on the rule. Do you have questions about the public charge? Email us! firstname.lastname@example.org. For Spanish version of this post, please visit MamasConPoder.
The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of MomsRising.org.
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