New Public Charge Rule Does Not Apply to Refugees or Special Immigrants from Afghanistan or Iraq

I’ve reported this news previously, but still get questions about it.

It is wonderful that the President is making it harder for people who would be a burden on our social services (aka welfare system) to stay in the US, but the new rule does not apply to perhaps the heaviest users of our social safety net—refugees.

Check out the new rules at The National Law Review:

Factors Government Will Consider under New Public Charge Rule

On the same day the Public Charge Rule went into effect (February 24, 2020), immigrant advocates held a teach-in at Boston City Hall to try to lessen the uncertainty and fear that has been spreading through immigrant communities.

At the Boston Teach-In last month. Bethany Li, of Greater Boston Legal Services, said the new rule will hit Chinese and other Asian immigrants particularly hard. I guess she is saying that her community uses a heck of a lot of welfare.

The Administration has stated that the Public Charge “[R]ule will protect hardworking American taxpayers, safeguard welfare programs for truly needy Americans, reduce the federal deficit, and re-establish the fundamental legal principle that newcomers to our society should be financially self-sufficient and not dependent on the largess of United States taxpayers.” However, immigration advocates view the rule as “penalizing poverty” and taking the chance to become self-sufficient away from immigrants, a group of individuals who historically has been an important part of our country and our economy.

Previously, this rule primarily affected those who accepted cash welfare benefits. However, the new rule makes admission to the U.S. more difficult for low-income immigrants and non-immigrants who use other, non-cash welfare benefits. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has said that the public charge rule is meant to determine whether a person is likely to use of certain government benefits in the future. To make that determination, officers will review the totality of the circumstances, including an applicant’s income, age, health, family status, assets, credit scores, liabilities, education, and skills (including English language), visa classification sought, and receipt of public benefits. Some factors serve as “negative” factors, others as “positive” factors.


These groups of individuals will not be subject to the public charge test:


~Applicants for Temporary Protected Status (TPS), asylee or refugee status, special immigrant juvenile status, or U or T visas.

More here.


Editor’s note:  As RRW approaches its 13th birthday, there are over 10,000 posts archived here at Refugee Resettlement Watch. Unfortunately, it is just me here with no staff and so it has become virtually impossible to answer all of the basic questions that come into my e-mail inbox or to RRW’s facebook page every day. I don’t want to appear rude—I simply haven’t enough hours in the day.

Please take time to visit RRW (don’t just read posts in your e-mail) and use the search window in the right hand sidebar and see if you can find the information you need.  Also see my series that I wrote in recent months entitled Knowledge is Power which explains some basic principles of how Refugee Resettlement is carried out in the US.

And, lastly, I don’t write that much every day, so if you made a habit of reading my posts here on a daily basis, you would eventually catch on to what is happening because I do link back to previous posts as much as possible. LOL!  Thank you for helping me not go crazy!


Colorado Study: Refugees Living in Cycle of Poverty

No! how can that be?

Over and over again the media spreads the gushing news (fed to it by the refugee industry) about how refugees benefit the economy by helping rebuild cities, paying taxes, and opening businesses (at faster rates than American slugs!).

So, how can refugees be living in a cycle of poverty?

They are, says the new study from the University of Colorado and guess what the answer is to lifting them out of poverty?  You guessed it!

Taxpayers need to pony-up and give them more financial support, build new housing for refugees and not make them go out and work menial jobs as soon as they get here.

Senators Ted Kennedy and Joe Biden designed the Refugee Act of 1980. They promised we wouldn’t be importing poverty! But, they knew that their industry pals needed cheap labor and that people in need of welfare vote for Democrats!

But, supplying cheap labor is why they are here in the first place especially in places like Colorado with its meat packing facilities dotting the state, and Big Meat’s voracious appetite for a steady supply of unskilled labor.

When now deceased Senator Ted Kennedy with the help of ‘Uncle Joe’ pushed through the Refugee Act of 1980  they promised we wouldn’t be importing poverty!  They lied.

Now to the news before my head explodes.

From KUNC:

Colorado’s Refugees Can Become Trapped In Chronic Poverty, Study Finds

(No kidding!)

Between the high cost of housing and shrinking federal funding for local organizations, many refugees resettled in Colorado find themselves stuck in chronic poverty. That’s according to new research from the University of Colorado Boulder, which studied refugee communities across the Front Range.

Xiaoling Chen, a geography doctoral student,wanted to understand why refugees became trapped in low-wage jobs, despite the state and federal resources intended to help them succeed.

The Refugee Industry will not be happy with Xiaoling Chen’s analysis that says refugees are trapped in poverty!

“So we (wanted) to find out why and in order to help the federal government address these challenges,” Chen said in a recent interview.

In her study, published this fall with support from the University of Colorado Denver, Chen explains that, despite their level of education or English proficiency, refugees in the US tend to have lower incomes compared to American born citizens; 50 percent of the refugees she surveyed said their first job in the US did not match their education level.

According to data from the Colorado Refugee Services Program, refugees in Colorado tend to find low-skill jobs in light manufacturing and hospitality, where they earn a monthly household income of around $700 to $999 in their first year.

By their fourth year, their earnings have hardly increased and many said it’s not enough to support their family.

In her research, Chen aimed to identify the barriers faced by refugees in their first eight months in Colorado. What she discovered is that the high cost of housing in cities like Denver have forced refugee agencies to get clients employed faster, often within their first three months in the US. Even though refugees are given financial assistance for the first eight months, those funds are quickly consumed by rent according to several agency workers interviewed for the study.

You can go read the complaints about the lack of taxpayer funding.  Then here (below) we see it is once again Trump’s fault.

Notice Chen does not clearly spell out the fact that the resettlement contractors are paid by the head to place refugees.

LOL! Larger budgets for the resettlement contractors doesn’t trickle down to refugees, but fuels fat cat salaries at the CEO level! The International Rescue Committee has offices in CO and its CEO is raking in a salary of over $900,000 a year. See here.

But, the mainstream media never reports on those exorbitant salaries.

KUNC continues….

Since Chen began her research in 2016, budgets for local refugee agencies have been further restricted as the overall number of refugee arrivals has plummeted under the Trump administration. For the year 2020, the annual cap was recently set at 18,000, the lowest number since the refugee program was created by congress in 1980. These restrictions have reportedly triggered layoffs while other agencies have closed down completely.

Among her policy recommendations, Chen suggests Colorado develop affordable housing for refugees and that the federal agency, Office for Refugee Resettlement, adjust the definition for “economic self-sufficiency***” to reflect actual living standards. In the end, said Chen, these investments would benefit everyone.

Really! Everyone! Even the taxpayers who must shell out more money to a program that already exceeds a billion dollars at the federal level and surely that much or more across 49 states.

“We can see that if the federal government and the state government can give more support to the resettlement community … those refugees can enrich the culture in the US and help to establish our economy,” Chen said.

“Enrich the culture!” “Establish our economy!”  Says who?  A PhD candidate at at Colorado University!  No wonder we are sick of the mainstream media!

Read it all.

Ms. Chen has confirmed what you knew intuitively—that refugees are not bringing economic boom times to your towns and cities!  Her prescription for solving the problem of refugee poverty, by throwing more of your hard earned money at it, must be resisted!

***You need to know that presently a refugee can be getting food stamps, housing help, medical care along with a low wage job and be considered “self sufficient” by the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement.  The contractors take every opportunity to tell the public the big lie—-that refugees are self-sufficient in only a few months.


Trump Administration brings back concept of immigrants supporting themselves without welfare!

welfare office

Pay attention to this! I don’t know if it would apply to refugees who are eligible for virtually all welfare programs shortly after arrival, but it should.  After all, Senator Ted Kennedy and his pals assured Congress in the 1979 debate leading up to the passage of the Refugee Act of 1980, that we were not going to be importing poverty with the newly formed Refugee Admissions Program.

As longtime readers know, big businesses, which hire refugees at low wages, expect the refugees to be accessing welfare to supplement their income.  So a requirement that they not be using welfare when they adjust their status (like when they apply for citizenship and voting rights!) would be a pretty chilling move on the part of the Administration.

Here is Matthew Vadum writing at the Epoch Times:

Trump Administration May Require Immigrants to Be Able to Support Themselves Financially


A long-anticipated plan to enforce provisions in the nation’s immigration laws that require prospective immigrants to be able to support themselves financially—so-called public-charge provisions—might be introduced by the Trump administration this month.

The proposed regulations, defining the phrase “public charge” under Section 212(a)(4) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, may be published this fall, and possibly as early as this month, according to a person close to the rulemaking process of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) who requested anonymity.

welfare use chart
Please note that if the number of refugees seems high to you that this chart, found at James Simpson’s Red Green Axis, includes Asylees in addition to Refugees.


Left-wing advocacy organizations have attacked any attempt to formally define “public charge” as being cruel and xenophobic, and aimed at drastically curtailing the flow of immigrants to the United States. But the lengths to which the new regulation will go remain to be seen.

Francis Cissna, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an agency within DHS, discussed a possible draft of the regulation during an Aug. 15 event at the National Press Club in Washington, hosted by the Center for Immigration Studies.

“The goal is not to reduce immigration or, in some diabolical fashion, shut the door on people, family-based immigration, or anything like that,” Cissna said. “The goal is simply to enforce a ground of inadmissibility to this country that’s been on the books for about 100–well, more than 100 years.

Cissna said the public-charge section in the law, a provision that has “hardly ever been enforced,” states that “an alien who in the opinion of the consular officer at the time of application for a visa, or in the opinion of the secretary of Homeland Security at the time of application for admission or adjustment of status—getting a green card—is likely at any time to become a public charge is inadmissible.”

The phrase “likely to become a public charge” has “never been, as far as I know” interpreted in any regulation, he said. There was an attempt in the 1990s to define the expression, but it was dropped.

Cissna said the administration wants to “issue proper regulations open to full public comment, to, at long last, interpret what that means.”

More here.

Trump Administration looking to enforce the law: "public charge" requirement coming back!

To my readers who have asked me about this for years—-asked me what happened to a law already on the books—here is a glimmer of (potential) good news.
welfare office
Needless to say the No Borders Left will go insane, but frankly if the Dems do go on a warpath against the idea that immigrants shouldn’t be sucking up welfare, it will hurt them at the polls in November.
No sensible Republican or Democrat supports the importation of welfare recipients.
From Neil Munro at Breitbart (hat tip Richard @highblueridge):

Homeland defense officials are reviving enforcement of a law that is intended to bar legal migrants who cannot earn a living in the United States.

The proposed regulation would implement the existing law, which bars legal immigrants from imposing a “public charge” on Americans. However, the plan is likely to be bitterly opposed by a loose alliance of business groups and by Democrats, both of whom gain when the federal government provides taxpayer aid to migrants, legal or illegal. A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) told Breitbart News:

The administration is committed to enforcing existing immigration law, which is clearly intended to protect the American taxpayer by ensuring that foreign nationals seeking to enter or remain in the U.S are self-sufficient. Any proposed changes would ensure that the government takes the responsibility of being good stewards of taxpayer funds seriously and adjudicates immigration benefit requests in accordance with the law.

The plan was mentioned in a 2017 work-plan released by DHS, but it was highlighted Wednesday by a report in the Washington Post. The report said:

Immigrants who accept almost any form of welfare or public benefit, even popular tax deductions, could be denied legal U.S. residency under a proposal awaiting approval by the Trump administration, which is seeking to reduce the number of foreigners living in the United States.

The proposal would also require Americans who sponsor migrants to post bonds of up to $10,000, which could be used to repay taxpayers for migrants’ use of federal aid.

The plan must be approved by DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, and then undergo a months-long public comment and regulatory process before it becomes a large regulation. If adopted, it will replace a 1999 regulation.

Much more here.
If the requirement extended to refugees the entire refugee program would crash and that is because the primary job of the resettlement contractors is to sign incoming refugees up for their ‘services’ (aka welfare).  They also help refugees find those low skilled jobs (slaughterhouse and hotel workers, etc) and show them how to supplement meager wages with welfare.
And, that idea of posting a bond makes me chuckle. 
Imagine this: Catholic Charities, the Lutherans, the Episcopalians and the Jews among the refugee resettlement agencies*** could sponsor refugees and instead of being paid to place them, the non-profit NGO puts up a $10,000 bond for say each family they place with the bond money coming from private charity.
When they have to put their private money where their mouth is, we would find out very quickly that their humanitarian zeal isn’t real!
***These are the nine major federal refugee contractors presently paid millions of tax dollars to resettle refugees. There will never be reform of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program as long as they collect federal funds and act as community organizing and political agitation groups.
The number in parenthesis is the percentage of the nine VOLAGs’ income paid by you (the taxpayer) to place the refugees, line them up with (low paying) jobs in food production and cleaning hotel rooms, and get them signed up for their services!  From most recent accounting, here.


FAIR: Refugee resettlement costs taxpayers billions; welfare biggest chunk

I’m happy to see that more national immigration control groups are addressing the costly UN/US Refugee Admissions Program!  Where are you Heritage?

muslim-welfare chart
Graphic (using ORR data) is not FAIR’s or Breitbart’s, but is from a 2015 report by then Senator Sessions Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest.

John Binder writing at Breitbart tells the latest story here:

Over a five year period, American taxpayers are billed more than $8 billion for the resettlement of thousands of foreign refugees every year, a new study finds.

In research conducted by the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), analysts concluded that annual refugee resettlement costs American taxpayers about $1.8 billion a year, and over five years, about $8.8 billion.

FAIR’s research found that of the $1.8 billion annual cost of resettling refugees in the U.S., about $867 million was spent on welfare.

Continue reading here.
And, go here, for FAIR’s report.
Reminder: Over the next few days I will be traveling, so don’t look for new posts here at RRW (after today) until early next week.  I probably won’t be able to post comments either.