Supreme Court Allows Trump’s Cruelest New Immigration Rule to Move Forward

January 28, 2020

The Trump Administration has spent three years trying to erect a wealth test for green cards. The U.S. Supreme Court has now cleared the way for the Administration to begin enforcing a new rule making it harder for lower-income immigrants to get green cards if they participate in often life-saving public benefits like Medicaid, SNAP, and other basic public benefits, which often augment inadequate income from low wages or inconsistent hours.

This cruel policy could cause up to 73,000 immigrants and family members in Mississippi, including over 22,000 children, to stop using public benefits like Medicaid or SNAP or to avoid enrolling in them in the first place. Many children impacted are U.S. citizens. The Mississippi Center for Justice has been at the forefront of the battle against the new regulation since last winter. The fight is far from over—and we need your help.

Nearly all of those impacted are immigrants of color, and we’ve heard firsthand from lawfully present immigrants across Mississippi who are so terrified of the new policy that they are deliberately avoiding health and nutrition assistance for themselves and their children, leaving them sick and hungry.

Let me be blunt: this policy effectively says that if you’re not white and not wealthy, you’re not welcome in America. It’s a direct attack on the fundamental values that make our country great. We cannot allow it to stand.

From the beginning, the Mississippi Center for Justice fought back by joining hundreds of thousands of elected officials, faith leaders, health care and public health practitioners, nonprofits, and Americans from all walks of life nationwide in submitting public comments opposing the new policy. We have also joined a coalition of other legal and advocacy groups in filing an amicus brief in some of the court challenges to the rule, which are ongoing.

We’re also organizing Know Your Rights trainings for immigrant communities, providing legal help and resources to help immigrants get the facts they need to make the right choices for their families, and lobbying Congress. We will continue to work with partners and allies in Mississippi and across the country to combat this immoral policy using every tool at our disposal.  

We need your help and your support as we continue our fight against the Administration’s war on immigrants who aren’t white and wealthy. Discriminatory policies like the public charge rule set a precedent for erecting barriers to all people of color in America, immigrants and native-born. Together, we must fight back and build a better future for all of Mississippi’s families.

Contact – Madeline Morcelle, JD, MPH, Director of Public Benefits Law, at the Mississippi Center for Justice: 769.230.0063 mmorcelle@mscenterforjustice.org.