Too Much Talk, Too Little Action – Albany Lawmakers End Session with Few Gains for Immigrants

June 21st, 2018

No Driver’s License Access, No Medicaid for TPS Holders, No “Stop ICE in Courts” Bill, No Tuition Assistance For Dreamers, No Early Voting, No Solution for Thousands Losing Classroom Seats Under Federal Law Changes

NEW YORK, NY – This session, the New York State Legislature made little headway on issues that impact the state’s 4.4 million immigrants – more than 1 out of every 4 New Yorkers.

After moderate support in the New York State 2018-2019 budget, lawmakers left Albany late last night after failing to expand access to driver’s licenses, stop ICE from making unwarranted arrests in courthouses, provide tuition assistance for Dreamers, enact early voting, expand Medicaid for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, or offer a meaningful response to the loss of educational opportunity for thousands of New Yorkers from the July 1st implementation of the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

Steven Choi, Executive Director the New York Immigration Coalition, issued the following statement:

“New York State’s 4 million immigrants are under daily attack by the Trump Administration, but our Governor, Assembly, and Senate failed to rise to the challenge. It is disappointing that our State officials offered many words but little action – failing to provide driver’s license access, limiting healthcare access for TPS recipients, still allowing ICE in courts, and not providing adequate funding for legal and literacy services.”

The state budget, concluded in March, provided a modest increase in Adult Literacy Education (ALE) funding by $500,000, renewed refugee resettlement support funding for $2 million, and put in new investments for underserved black immigrants, workforce development and safety net hospitals across the state. Funding for the Liberty Defense Project remained unchanged at $10 million, despite growing needs upstate.