Major policy change - Defining a "Public Charge'

Highlight from USA TODAY, Oct 9th, Alan Gomez

The Trump administration is proposing a massive overhaul of federal regulations that would dramatically change the way the U.S. decides which immigrants are deemed a "public charge."


That new definition – if it goes into effect – would impact the applications of hundreds of thousands of immigrants trying to become legal permanent residents, the first step toward eventually becoming a U.S. citizen.

Secretary of Homeland Security Kirsten Nielsen said in statement that the administration was enforcing a longstanding federal law that requires immigrants to the U.S. "show they can support themselves financially."

"This proposed rule will implement a law passed by Congress intended to promote immigrant self-sufficiency and protect finite resources by ensuring that they are not likely to become burdens on American taxpayers," she said.

Critics of the proposal say it goes way too far, punishing poorer legal immigrants for receiving even small amounts of government aid just when they need it the most.

Read the full article, at

The policy is not yet in effect, and currently being deliberated. Affected individuals can share their opinions and concerns on many public forums, in support, or in opposition to the policy. The administration is required to review public comment on changes like this one.