New York, NY—With Congress returning to D.C. to debate the HEROES Act, Change Research/New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) released new polling showing strong statewide support for extending stimulus checks to immigrant families—including mixed status families with American citizens married to ITIN holders—undocumented immigrants paying taxes using a tax identification number. The poll, conducted June 15-18, showed the majority (55%) of New York voters support undocumented New York families receiving stimulus checks. The polling also reveals that 77% of New York voters support relief payments for families who make less than $99,000 and that 64% believe that Congress has not done enough to help working Americans and small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of July 9, New York State’s unemployment rate was at 17.1%, while New York City’s was at nearly 20%, much higher than the national rate of 12.4 %. For undocumented New Yorkers, the economic pain is far more acute. In June, NYIC partnered with the Center for an Urban Future on a report revealing that half of New York City’s working-class immigrants have lost their jobs, highlighting the acute needs of this population. These struggling New Yorkers are ineligible for unemployment insurance despite contributing $1.4 billion to the state's unemployment system over the last decade.
After NYIC released the polling, Steve Choi, Executive Director of the New York Immigration Coalition, issued the following statement:
“By a clear majority, New York voters want a stimulus for all New Yorkers—including low-income immigrant families—not another bailout for billionaires. More than 2 million immigrants are serving on the front lines of New York’s COVID-19 outbreak, ensuring the safety, health, and well-being of every single one of us—and now New Yorkers have overwhelmingly confirmed that they want an end to the cruel exclusion of immigrants and their families from federal relief.
In the upcoming stimulus bill, Senate Minority Leader Schumer has the opportunity to finally deliver something for immigrant families, having failed to do so in the last four stimulus packages. He can start by finishing what the House Democrats started and pushing the HEROES Act through the Senate. The cost of inaction is too high. New York cannot survive this pandemic without its frontline essential immigrant workers.”
Across New York State, immigrants make up 33% of the front lines workers. In New York City, the epicenter of the virus’ original outbreak, immigrant New Yorkers make up more than half of the front line workers. Additionally, 90% of New York’s front line workers live in the three boroughs hardest hit by the city's COVID-19 outbreak—Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens.