Thursday, 21 March 2019

Expanding the definition of which immigrants are ‘public charges’ sounds fair, but is flawed


The Trump administration recently proposed to expand who constitutes a “public charge,” a dusty government label from 1882 that is stamped upon immigrants if they or their families are deemed overly dependent on public assistance. The term signals a high likelihood that one will forever burden society.

Previously, the government reserved this label for individuals receiving cash assistance greater than 50 percent of their incomes. The proposed changes now recommend tallying housing, food, cash and health care assistance to determine whether one is a “public charge.” Being classified as a public charge disqualifies one from legal immigration.


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