USCCB Express Concern About Recent Supreme Court Decision on Public Charge

Gavel

This week, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) voiced its concern about the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling on "public charge". The ruling stated that the Trump Administration could implement its new public charge rules everywhere in the United States (except Illinois) while litigation challenging the legality of the rule proceeds through the federal courts.

"The Supreme Court's decision will have devastating consequences for immigrant communities, as those impacted are cast into the shadows because they fear deportation and family separation for seeking critical support. . . The Church upholds the dignity of all human life, and the Gospel compels us to serve those who are in need, regardless of their circumstances. Preventing anyone from having access to life-saving services is contrary to our belief that all life is sacred from its beginning to its end."

In its description of the public charge changes, the USCCB provides further information about the definition of public charge: 

There are a number of eligibility requirements (known as grounds of inadmissibility) that the federal government considers when determining whether to admit an individual into the United States or allow an immigrant to adjust status and become a lawful permanent resident (LPR) or to receive a Green Card. One such factor is whether the individual is or is likely to become a "public charge." For many years, the public charge analysis undertaken by the federal government focused on the likelihood that an immigrant will become financially dependent on (likely to receive over 50% of their income or support from) the government through: (1) the receipt of public cash assistance, or (2) long-term hospitalization or similar care at the government's expense. In making the public charge determination, the federal government considers several factors including: age, health, family status, assets, resources, financial status, and education/skills.

The proposed changes expand the number of public benefits and number of immigrants considered in its public charge analysis. To read the full statement, please visit the USCCB website.

January 31, 2020 - 3:50pm
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