Velázquez on DHS Proposal to Restrict Public Benefits for Immigrants
Washington, DC –Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) released the following statement today in response to a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) federal rule proposal that would deny lawful permanent residence to immigrants who participate in public benefits and discourage even U.S. citizens from accessing basic services.
“If this rule becomes law, it would force families to consider forgoing basic services that keep our communities healthy and safe. In a particularly malevolent move, this proposal could put 7.9 million U.S. citizen children with immigrant parents at risk of losing access to services like food stamps, housing assistance and health insurance. While children's use of benefits may not explicitly be considered, the rule would create a climate of fear and have a chilling effect, dissuading many immigrants and their families – even those legally unaffected by the rule - from applying for benefits or causing them to unenroll for assistance they could otherwise receive.”