Sacramento, Calif. – Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association (APAPA) joins OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates in its disapproval over the Supreme Court of the United States (Supreme Court) for its allowance of the Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds (Public Charge Rule) to move forward.

The Public Charge Rule was released in August 2019 and would deny green cards and visas to low-income immigrants who may use public aid after arriving in the United States. On January 28, 2020, OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates, a 501(c)(3) national non-profit organization, released a statement expressing its outrage at the Supreme Court for lifting the preliminary injunctions and authorizing the government to penalize immigrants for past aid usage in a 5-4 vote.

APAPA strongly supports OCA’s statement over the outrageousness that the Supreme Court has allowed such an action to continue. The etiology of the “Public Charge” ideology originated in the 1840s when several anti-Catholic states used the provision to deport poor Irish Catholics.

“The public-charge rule was thus included in the Immigration Act of 1882, the first comprehensive immigration reform bill in U.S. history. The law, adopted by the same Congress that enacted the Chinese Exclusion Act, required barring entry for “any convict, lunatic, idiot, or any person unable to take care of himself or herself without becoming a public charge.” Nowhere did Congress define the term “public charge,” so it was quickly abused by anti-immigrant administrations.” – says Christopher Richardson, a former State Department consular officer, and diplomat.

APAPA believes in the story behind the poem on the Statue of Liberty, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…” (Irvin Berlin). Our country thrives because of its diversity and many individuals have landed on these shores, worked hard and through the meritorious process, achieved the American Dream.

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