FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 22, 2018
Email: [email protected]
Juan Gastelum, 213-375-3149
Hayley Burgess, 202-384-1279
Trump Administration Proposal Would Separate Immigrant Families, Harm Public Health and Wellbeing for All of Us
WASHINGTON — The Trump administration today announced it would propose a new rule that would prevent immigrant families on the road to U.S. citizenship from being able to secure permanent lawful immigration status if they utilize any of a vast array of health care supports, nutrition assistance, or other services. Previous versions of the proposed rule have been decried by public health officials, mayors, faith leaders, and anti-poverty advocates due to its breathtaking scope and the potential consequences of such a policy change.
On Saturday, Sept. 22, major news outlets announced the U.S. Department of Homeland Security would post the proposed rule for public comment in the Federal Register.
Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement:
“Building on the traumatic separation of families at the border, the Trump administration has taken another cruel step. This proposed rule change will similarly result in the separation of families and is just the latest assault on immigrant families. This is an inhumane attack on the health and wellbeing of so many families and communities across the country.
“How you contribute to your community — and not what you look like or the contents of your wallet — should be what matters most. This proposed rule does the opposite and makes clear that the Trump administration continues to prioritize money over family unity by ensuring that only the wealthiest can afford to build a future in this country.
“The Trump administration is using this regulatory backdoor approach because it attempted to enact its draconian agenda of restricting legal immigration through Congress — and failed. This rule change is radical and extreme, and it leaves the door wide open for potential abuse. All of us, regardless of where we were born, suffer when immigrants are penalized for trying to have their basic needs met.
“Whether by ripping families apart, enacting a Muslim ban, ending temporary protected status, or callously holding immigrant youth with DACA hostage to politics, the Trump administration has shown that its appetite for harming the immigrant community is insatiable. This latest attack on immigrants is a cynical ploy to deflect from its current political misfortunes and to attempt to scapegoat immigrants once again just in time for the midterm elections.
“In this case, however, we have the tools to fight back. The comment period for the proposed rule will provide an opportunity for all Americans, regardless of citizenship status, to tell the government that we oppose this rule change. Instead of using an administrative backdoor to attack immigrants, the Trump administration should work with Congress on legislation that would make our communities stronger and healthier. Our power is in our voice, and the time to use it is now.”
To learn more about the Trump administration’s proposed rule change, please visit www.protectimmigrantfamilies.org.
MORE INFORMATION on “public charge”: www.nilc.org/exec-orders-and-access-to-public-programs/