Undocumented Immigrants Should NOT Receive Public Assistance

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Introduction There are over twelve million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. Many came to America to work, go to school, or be reunited with family members who are already residing here. Most migrants want to work and pursue the “American dream”. There are many barriers for residents to achieving success at the work and life balance. The immigrants fall back on public assistance to support them. Background Immigrants must overcome many barriers to succeed in America. First, migrants frequently must learn a new language. Inability to communicate is a critical barrier for accessing the health care system (Urrutia-Rojas, Marshall, Trevino, Lurie, & Minguia-Bayona, 2006). Second, the processes of work and schooling for themselves and their families can be daunting. Lastly, immigrants use the established social network of longer duration residents for reference and knowledge (Nandi, Galea, Lopez, Nandi, Strongarone, & Ompad, 2008). For purposes of this report, there are three different types of immigrant: legal, undocumented, and refugees or persons seeking asylum. All three types of residents want to succeed and achieve their personal dream. Some policies and laws will support immigrants’ dreams. Other laws limit the available support based on resident status. The Welfare Reform Act of 1996 states “non-citizen immigrants are no longer eligible for federally funded Medicaid (health coverage for low-income Americans) and other income-maintenance programs such as Supplemental Security Income” (Lee, 2009). Also in 1996, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), made most legal immigrants ineligible for publicly funded services such as Medicaid for the first five ye... ... middle of paper ... ...ulnerability. Health Affairs , 26 (5), 1258-1267. Lee, S. &. (2009). Disparities in access to health care among non-citizens in the United States. Health Sociology Review , 18 (3), 307-317. Nandi, A., Galea, S., Lopez, G., Nandi, V., Strongarone, S., & Ompad, D. C. (2008). Access to and use of health services among undocumented mexican immigrants in a US urban area. American Journal of Public Health , 98 (11), 2011-2020. Urrutia-Rojas, X., Marshall, K., Trevino, E., Lurie, S. G., & Minguia-Bayona, G. (2006). Disparities in access to health care and health status between documented and undocumented Mexican immigrants in North Texas. Hispanic Health Care International , 4 (1), 5-14. Weaver, R. D. (2009). A New Era for Legal Immigrants?: Rethinking Title IV of The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act. Journal of Policy Practice , 54-68.

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