HomeAsian AmericansCivil rights group urges immigrants to seek benefits despite Trump administration

Civil rights group urges immigrants to seek benefits despite Trump administration

Immigrant rights protest by AAPI Students
AAPI students fight for immigration rights.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Los Angeles is urging immigrants to seek public assistance despite efforts by the Trump White House to discourage that.

In a statement, AAAJ, Los Angeles pointed out that five separate courts have issued orders blocking Trump’s efforts to make it more difficult for immigrants to get green cards if they rely on government benefits. Since the statement was issued, a court in Oregon barred Trump from requiring proof of health insurance to get a visa, reported Time.

“We encourage all immigrants to continue using Medi-Cal, CalFresh and housing benefits to keep their families healthy and thriving. Go to the doctor, bring your children to their doctors, and keep accessing healthy, nutritious food. The use of these life-saving benefits will not affect your application for green cards within the United States,” Marianna Yamamoto, Health Access Project Coordinator. 

Last month, courts in California, New York, Washington, Illinois and Maryland issued rulings blocking Trump’s efforts.

“The Rule is simply a new agency policy of exclusion in search of a justification,” Judge George Daniels of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan wrote in his ruling, according to CBS. “It is repugnant to the American dream of the opportunity for prosperity and success through hard work and upwards mobility.”

AAAJ, LA says a record 266,000 public comments were submitted about the public charge rules and most overwhelmingly opposed the new restrictions.

“The timing of these preliminary injunctions could not have been better. Covered California’s open enrollment period just began and will continue through January 30, 2020. Advancing Justice-LA and our collaborative of community-based partners throughout the state will be able to help community members to identify affordable coverage that meets their respective needs through Covered California. Because Medi-Cal has no enrollment deadline, we can also help individuals apply for Medi-Cal if they meet the income guidelines throughout the year,” says Doreena Wong, Advancing Justice-LA’s Health Access Project Director. 

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