CWDA Submits Comments Regarding “Public Charge” Rulemaking Proposal
Last week, CWDA submitted comments to the Department of Homeland Security in opposition to the proposed rule change that would broaden the list of benefits considered “negative factors” in a public charge assessment of immigrants when applying to change their immigration status.
This list will include, for the first time, consideration of Medicaid, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Section 8 Housing Vouchers, public housing and Medicare Part D financial assistance.
CWDA is concerned about the potentially massive chilling effect of this proposed rule. Based on past experience, many immigrant families will be harmed by this proposed rule, whether the rule applies to them directly or not. We have already seen families that include U.S. citizens depriving themselves of nutrition benefits under SNAP, support for housing costs, and Medicaid services out of fear. The ripple effect of these rules would extend far beyond the subgroup of individuals who might actually be subject to the public charge test; these changes will discourage many immigrant families from accessing benefits for which they are eligible. This may additionally impact U.S. citizen family members who would not be affected by the rule directly, but who choose to go without coverage due to the heightened fear in our communities about the rule.
Download the full letter below.