Young Center Decries HUD Policy Targeting Immigrant Families
Yesterday the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights joined thousands of organizations and individuals in opposing a new government regulation that targets immigrant families and could force children into homelessness.
Proposed by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the regulation specifically attacks low-income families with mixed immigration status, which are households that include at least one undocumented immigrant. Under current law, mixed status families already pay higher rent than those composed only of residents and citizens. Under HUD’s new regulation, in order to receive housing aid vouchers or public housing, mixed status families will be prohibited from using these benefits, forcing them to choose between safe housing or staying together as a family. According to HUD, the policy will impact about 25,000 families. That includes tens of thousands of children who would face either family separation or homelessness due to this unfair policy.
At the Young Center, we understand both the vulnerability of children in mixed-status families and their capacity to benefit from critical government programs, particularly public housing. We are particularly concerned that the proposed rule will hinder children’s growth, development and health by undermining the ability for their families to remain together in safe, stable housing. The Young Center opposes the adoption of any rules or regulations that would deprive children and their adult caregivers from access to the stable housing necessary to ensure their best interests—their safety, health, and well-being. For communities to thrive, families must be able to stay together and get the care, services and support they need to remain healthy and safe. HUD should develop programs and seek funding to ensure that every family, regardless of immigration status, has access to one of the most basic of human rights—a safe place to call home. We therefore urged the agency to rescind the proposed rule, which puts some of the most vulnerable members of our communities in harm's way.
Photo by Elvert Barnes/FLICKR.