WASHINGTON—Today, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, granted the Trump administration the ability to implement changes to the public charge rule, lifting a preliminary injunction pending other litigation. The rule targets the health and wellbeing of immigrants, including many in the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AAs and NHPIs) community. The public charge rule was previously blocked by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York from taking effect.

“We are disappointed that the Supreme Court is permitting the public charge rule to move forward. The public charge rule is antithetical to who we are as a country and targets, primarily, hard-working immigrant families of color,” said Juliet K. Choi, executive vice president of the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF).

Today’s ruling means that public charge regulation, finalized by DHS in August 2019, can go into effect in every state, except Illinois which is subject to a state-wide injunction. While the regulation directly impacts only a small number of people, the rule has already led to many families and individuals dis-enrolling from otherwise eligible health programs. For example, the Kaiser Family Foundation found that about half of community health centers reported people declining or cancelling coverage because of the rule.

“2020 is a critical election year, where every vote matters,” added Choi. “The Trump administration has continually attacked immigrant families and communities of color through executive action. It is important, more than ever, to vote for leaders that support the American values we believe in.”

APIAHF, and its partners in the Protecting Immigrant Families (PIF) campaign will continue to organize community action against the Administration’s public charge rule and protect our immigrant families from unjust policies.


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The Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) influences policy, mobilizes communities, and strengthens programs and organizations to improve the health of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders.