Democrats Demand: ‘Release as Many Detained Migrants as Possible’ for Coronavirus
Pramila Jayapal joined other Democratic members of Congress to demand release
Several progressive Democratic lawmakers have used the coronavirus outbreak to demand the Department of Homeland Security releases illegal aliens from detention and lightens immigration enforcement measures.
Democratic Washington Rep. Pramila Jayapal joined other Democratic members of Congress to demand that acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf take action to protect the immigrant community and detained illegal aliens from COVID-19.
Among the House Democrats demands are:
- A “moratorium” on all immigration arrests of individuals who pose no public safety risk
- A release of as “many immigrants as possible” from detention
- A reconsideration of the Trump administration’s public charge rules.
“In times of a public health crisis, it is imperative that we protect the most vulnerable and remove barriers to care for all, including fears of enforcement that prevent immigrant communities from seeking care,” the progressive lawmakers wrote.
“COVID-19 does not discriminate based on nationality, citizenship status, or any other characteristic, and our federal agencies must respond accordingly,” the letter continued.
Jayapal said the large-scale release of aliens in DHS detention was necessary to decrease the population of “overcrowded” facilities.
On Wednesday, ICE announced they would scale back its enforcement procedures and focus on those who pose public safety risks.
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The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, another agency within DHS, also said earlier in March that illegal aliens could get COVID-19 testing without being penalized under the public charge rule.
Earlier this week, Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) also demanded taxpayer-funded handouts for "every person" living in the United States, including illegal aliens, to help with the coronavirus recovery.
Tlaib's proposal amounts to an emergency universal basic income (UBI) and would have the U.S. Treasury provide every person in America with money until the coronavirus crisis ends.
The plan is called the “Automatic BOOST to Communities Act” and requires two $1 trillion platinum coins to be issued by the Treasury.