Last week ANCOR submitted formal comments opposing a proposal by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to make it harder for immigrants to obtain citizenship if they have ever depended on public benefits, including Medicaid.
ANCOR’s comments focused on effects this rule could have on people with disabilities who are immigrants, as well as a potential Direct Support Professional (DSP) workforce. These comments included recommendations that DHS:
- Remove the extension of Medicaid as a consideration for the designation of “public charge.”
- Remove the consideration of institutionalization and instead expend resources on encouraging legal immigrants with disabilities to use supports to become self-sufficient and employed tax-paying citizens.
- Reconsider any consideration of health status in the proposed rule.
- Rethink how consideration of family status will impact promising workers for the DSP workforce, one of the United States’ most needed labor markets.
- Amend its consideration of education and skills as a pre-requisite to legal immigration.
Our comments conclude that “Although ANCOR does not support this proposed rule, we believe strongly in always being a resource and collaborator. ANCOR is hopeful that harmful provisions around health, Medicaid use, family status, and education and skills will be removed from the proposed rule. Instead ANCOR hopes to see in its place, a willingness to engage with the legislative branch on immigration reform and a desire to create the best policy possible for all future Americans.”