Today, the Trump-Pence administration’s Department of Homeland Security released its final public charge rule, a harmful rule designed to keep families separated and to dissuade immigrants from accessing health care and meeting other basic needs. Under this new rule, people could be denied visas, green cards, and entry into the United States simply because they have received any one of a broad range of public benefits they are legally allowed to access, including health care, nutrition assistance, and housing assistance. The rule will likely take effect on or around October 15, 2019.
Statement from Amanda Skinner, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Southern New England:
“The Trump-Pence administration uses any opportunity to continue to persecute and oppress immigrants – this inhumane rule will punish people for accessing essential benefits and make people afraid to get the health care, housing support, food, and critical social services they need. This is yet another racist, cruel attack on one of our most vulnerable communities. Clearly Trump’s policies and hateful rhetoric are meant to encourage prejudice, promote discrimination, and create a toxic culture of fear and xenophobia.
“Immigrants and their families already struggle to access basic necessities, including health care. Health care is a human right, and we stand with our patients and immigrant communities in Connecticut and Rhode Island to fight back against these harmful policies and protect everyone’s right to live healthy, safe lives. We will continue to offer reproductive health care to anyone in need—our doors stay open.
“We thank Connecticut Attorney General William Tong for challenging this dangerous rule in court and call on our elected officials, supporters, and advocates to oppose any attempt to prevent people from meeting their basic needs or accessing legal public benefits to help care for their families. No one’s health or safety should be at risk because of their immigration status.”