Press Release by Congresswoman Pelosi
Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi
Pelosi Joins Vice President Gore in Fight for Fairness for Legal Immigrants
January 25, 1999
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) today joined with Vice President Gore and the Clinton Administration in the fight for fairness for legal immigrants. The Vice President and Rep. Pelosi met with Asian seniors at Self-Help for the Elderly in San Francisco this morning. "We have taken small steps towards restoring benefits to legal immigrants cut by a Republican Congress bent on welfare reform at any cost. It's now time to break into a stride and reverse these punitive actions that hurt so many elderly and children in our community," Pelosi said.
Many legal immigrants lost their benefits when the President signed the 1996 welfare reform law. In the FY2000 budget proposal the Administration plans a number of steps that will assist legal immigrants. These include:
- $1.3 billion over five years to restore nutrition, disability and health benefits to categories of legal immigrants not covered by the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 and the Agricultural Research Act of 1998;
- $930 million over five years to restore Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid to legal immigrants who have become disabled after entering the United States and have been in the country for at least five years. An estimated 54,000 legal immigrants will benefit from this change by 2004;
- $60 million to extend Food Stamps to legal immigrants in the United States on August 22, 1996 who subsequently reach age 65;
- $220 million for states to provide health coverage to legal immigrant children who entered the country after August 22, 1996. Approximately 55,000 children would receive important health coverage by 2004.
- $105 million for states to provide Medicaid coverage to legal immigrant women who entered the United States after August 22, 1996 and subsequently became pregnant. It's estimated 23,000 women would be covered by 2004.
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