Capitol Correspondence - 09.24.18

Administration Proposing Changes to Green Card/Visa Access Based on Public Benefits Use

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As shared by NCB News:

“The Trump administration announced a proposed rule Saturday that would make it harder to obtain visas or green cards for immigrants already in the U.S. legally, as well as those seeking to enter, if they have ever been dependent on certain public benefits, like Medicaid, food stamps or public housing.

The proposal, which can become a rule after a public comment period, rewrites a 1999 rule that limited green cards for immigrants who were dependent on cash benefits, but did not take into consideration health care or other non-monetary benefits.

Originally, the rule known as ‘public charge’ began in the 1800s as a way for the U.S. to deny entry to immigrants who were likely to become a drain on the economy.


‘The [disqualifying] benefits generally represent the largest federal programs for low-income people by total expenditure that address basic living needs such as income, housing, food, and medical care,’ a spokeswoman for DHS said in a written briefing.

Proposed disqualifying benefits would also include the Medicare Part D low-income subsidy and vouchers for Section 8 housing.”

Politico further shares that “In a departure from leaked drafts, the roughly 400-page proposed rule won’t target immigrants who’ve received subsidized health insurance under the Affordable Care Act or the Children’s Health Insurance Program.” [Emphasis added by ANCOR.]

ANCOR is sharing this story because of its possible applicability to immigrants with I/DD or whose children have I/DD who might receive public assistance.