Children’s Healthwatch’s Testimony On The Detrimental Impact Of The Trump Administration’s Immigration Policies

On December 16th, Children’s HealthWatch submitted a testimony to Chairman Scott and members of the House Committee on Education and Labor on the detrimental impact the Trump Administration’s immigration policies have on the health and well-being of children. As pediatricians and public health researchers, we are gravely concerned about the culture of fear perpetuated by controversial policies that target immigrants, including families with young children, across the United States and their effects on economic hardship and health. Since the start of the Trump Administration, families of immigrants have been unfairly targeted by a number of new policies and through multiple Departments and executive processes, including changes to:

  • Public charge (Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, and anticipated
    Department of Justice)
  • Sponsor deeming and liability (White House memo)
  • Fee waiver, fee schedule, and other fee changes (DHS)
  • 2020 Census – attempt to add a citizenship question
  • Public housing access for mixed-status families (Department of Housing and Urban
  • Presidential proclamation on the suspension of entry of immigrants who would financially
    burden the healthcare system

These policies do harm, and not just to the immigrants directly affected. The policies will drive up national healthcare and education costs and impair over the long term our national health, educational achievement, and economic status. They build an invisible wall to keep out immigrants, including children, and are an affront to the American Dream. However, there is still time to protect the nation’s health and values before these policies go into effect and do more harm. We strongly oppose these administrative actions that do injury to the health of children and their families and thus urge Congress to protect our immigrant neighbors.