Buffalo, NY – This week Mayor Byron W. Brown joined other elected officials who are members of the Cities for Action network in submitting written comments to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in opposition of the proposed Public Charge rule.
USCIS has proposed changes to its Public Charge rule which would allow denial of some status applications to immigrants who are likely to become a public charge. The rule change would define use of certain public benefits as factors in USCIS decisions to grant or deny future immigrants an opportunity to become permanent residents.
“It is our position that the proposed rule would pressure immigrants and their families to forgo enrolling in vital programs such as nutrition assistance, health coverage and housing that their families are eligible for and need,” Mayor Brown wrote in his opposing comments. “Because the rules for determining whether someone is a “public charge” are technical and the circumstances under which such a determination is made are often confusing, the number of low-income immigrant families that choose not to receive benefits would likely exceed by a sizable amount the number that would ultimately be subject to a “public charge” determination.”
Mayor Brown’s written comment was submitted with information about how this rule could affect individuals in need, especially when their children are present in the U.S. and eligible for local resources.
The written comment can be viewed in full at Regulations.gov and is the Mayor’s second submission concerning the proposed rule. In October of this year, he signed on to a U.S. Conference of Mayors letter in opposition to the proposed rule.
The comment period for the proposed rule ended today, Monday, December 10, 2018.