CAPAC Members Condemn Trump Administration's Proposed Rule Change that Puts Families at Risk

Sep 24, 2018 Issues: Healthcare, Immigration

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On September 22, 2018, The Trump Administration announced its intent to introduce a proposed rule that would make it difficult for many immigrants to come to the U.S. or receive green cards if they are considered likely to use benefits such as Medicaid, housing assistance, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), among others. Experts warn this change could cause individuals to disenroll from public benefits for fear of losing their opportunity to get a green card, leading to worse health and poverty outcomes for millions of children and families. It could also make it more difficult for families to be reunited with loved ones in the United States. CAPAC Chair Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Immigration Task Force Chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), and CAPAC Healthcare Task Force Co-Chair Rep. Barbara Lee issued the following statements:

Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:

“In their quest to shame and isolate immigrants to this country, the Trump Administration is gambling with the health of children, wagering that their lives matter less because they were not born here.

“There is no justification for this rule change outside of bald-faced xenophobia. The change applies to immigrants who are here legally and have done nothing to merit punishment. Immigrant families are no less entitled to food or housing support than any other person trying to get by in this unequal economy. Moreover, by working and paying taxes, many of these immigrants have actually earned these benefits. Others, like children and seniors who are not working should not be punished for somebody else’s prejudice.

“Programs like SNAP, Section 8, and TANF are proven to help Americans lift themselves out of poverty. And countless families are better off today because our government helped them find their feet here. Even Donald Trump required a $14 million loan from his father to get his business started, so it is patently false to claim that this is about some faux ideal of independence, as Department of Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen has claimed.

“You don’t kick the cane away from a person and criticize them for not standing. But that’s what this rule is doing. I’m deeply worried that immigrant families who are here legally and are doing their best to get by will now go hungry because they fear being punished for using the resources our country has made available to them.”

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), CAPAC Immigration Task Force Chair:

“The Trump Administration just unveiled a terrifying new proposed regulation that takes a cruel step in his continued attack on immigrants and their families. This change creates a rigged immigration process that makes it impossible for all but the wealthiest to have a secure, permanent future here. Green Cards shouldn’t go to the highest bidder. Your actions, not your wallet, should define you in the United States. This just the latest ploy from Trump and Republicans to distract Americans from their efforts to bulldoze working families. We won’t play their games and are ready to fight tooth and nail to stop this rule.”

Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13), CAPAC Healthcare Task Force Co-Chair:

“The Trump Administration is launching yet another attack on communities of color and the poor. So many families, especially AAPI families and families of color, rely on programs to care for their children – programs like Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the Women Infants and Children (WIC) program, and the Children’s Insurance Program (CHIP). As Co-Chair of CAPAC’s Healthcare Task Force, I’m appalled that the Trump Administration wants to cut these programs for our most vulnerable. We must stop this proposed rule, because families shouldn’t be punished for caring for their children.”

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The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994