Washington, DC—Today, House leadership, led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, announced a sweeping new COVID-19 stimulus bill, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act or the HEROES Act, which includes $915 billion for state, local, territorial and tribal governments, $10 billion for food stamps, $150 million for food banks. Importantly, it recognizes immigrants’ critical contributions as essential workers on the front lines of the pandemic, and includes critical economic and healthcare assistance for every family regardless of status.
New York has been hardest hit by the pandemic with a disproportionate impact on communities of color, in particular immigrants. To bring continued attention to the dire need for support, on Monday, the New York Immigration Coalition launched an ad campaign demanding Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer fight for the inclusion of all immigrants, regardless of legal status, in the next stimulus bill.
In response to the House Democrat’s introduction of the HEROES Act, Steve Choi, the Executive Director of the New York Immigration Coalition, issued the following statement:
“It’s about time that Washington prioritizes the health and well-being of America’s families over corporations. We applaud the House Democrats for their comprehensive package providing healthcare and economic protections to the millions of immigrant essential workers who were left out of four previous relief packages. The HEROES Act is a chance to support the families disproportionately impacted by this pandemic and left unemployed, uninsured, facing reduced wages or the loss of a breadwinner. It’s a chance to ensure the health and security of everyone who calls America home. The New York Immigration Coalition calls on Senate Minority Leader Schumer and the Senate to finish what the House Democrats started and end the inexcusable exclusion of America’s immigrant communities from the federal response to this historic crisis.”
The four previous stimulus bills denied millions of immigrant Americans economic assistance at a time when unemployment rates are approaching levels not seen since the Great Depression. According to the Migration Policy Institute,1.2 million immigrant families could not receive any of the relief offered in Congress’ legislation.Ensuring that the next federal relief package included those left behind was among the top priorities for immigrant advocates. Polling conducted in April by the Center for American Progress indicates that a majority of Americans support federal relief going to undocumented individuals.