The Department of Homeland Security has proposed a new federal regulation that expands the definition of “public charge,” – a term used by U.S. immigration officials to describe a person who “is likely to become primarily dependent on the government for subsistence.” The proposed expansion of this definition would allow officials to factor in the use of non-cash benefits, including the EITC, SNAP, WIC, CHIP, and LIHEAP, when making decisions about admitting or deporting non-citizens.
A new policy brief from the Center on Poverty and Social Policy discusses the devastating potential impacts of this proposal by estimating the effect of households with at least one non-citizen canceling their participation in SNAP/food stamps and WIC. About 90 percent of children with immigrant parents are eligible for non-cash benefits like SNAP and most of these children live in households with at least one non-citizen. The brief estimates that the proposed changes could put 500,000 more US citizen children at risk of moving into poverty.
Read more here and join GCIR and partners on April 19th at 4pm ET, 3pm CT, 2pm MT, and 1pm PT for an urgent policy call: A Guide to the New “Public Charge” Rules: What is Public Charge and How can Organizations and Funders Respond to Support Family and Child Well-Being.