March 16, 2022
As we reflect on 2022 thus far, the need to address and combat California’s ever-widening racial and economic inequalities become even more salient. We are entering the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, where the heaviest health and economic burdens continue to fall on low-wage immigrant, Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) communities. We are also seeing the disparate impacts of inflation on these same communities; they are struggling to stay afloat in meeting the health, food, and safety needs of themselves and their families.
Paradoxically, our state budget revenues continue to grow. According to the Governor’s January Projections, our state government is operating with a $45.7 billion surplus this year (with a projected additional $15 billion) – made possible by tax revenues from the wealthy who have flourished during the pandemic, often at the expense of low-income workers. While the state of California enjoys record-breaking revenues, too few reap the benefits. Even with well intentioned, historic policies that have been enacted to try to address these disparities, the reality is that inequality is growing in our state.
The political landscape is also shifting at unprecedented rates, with the looming onset of statewide elections in November. Urgency and bold leadership have never been more critical. CIPC and our partners are actively moving forward a legislative and budgetary agenda to ensure that we create a fairer economy and state for the long term. Here’s what we’re demanding this year:
The California Immigrant Equity Budget – supported by over 140 leading health, economic justice, civil rights, social justice, and community-based organizations statewide—would allocate $2.5 billion to:
We are also excited to announce our 2022 state legislative priorities – which seek to further disentangle the criminal legal system from ICE, ensure equitable access to the DMV, and promote the civic engagement of immigrants in our democratic processes.
These investments will ensure that we are prioritizing the well-being of our most marginalized communities, continuing to look critically at structural exclusions, and honoring the role and contributions of immigrant Californians: us, our neighbors, colleagues, family and friends.
Will you join us in showing elected leaders that change cannot wait? This is our time to create a real California for All.
SafetyNet4All: AB 2847 (E. Garcia): Invests in immigrant workers who have been historically excluded from unemployment benefits, by calling on California to develop and fund a one-year Excluded Worker Pilot Program. The Pilot Program would provide $300 a week for up to 20 weeks to immigrant workers who lose their job and are excluded from unemployment benefits due to their immigration status. When the COVID-19 pandemic began and millions lost their jobs, unemployment benefits served as an essential lifeline for Californians, more so than stimulus checks or other forms of relief. However, based on outdated and racist policies, undocumented immigrant workers, who comprise 1 in 16 workers in California, were entirely excluded from the program and unable to access other pandemic-related unemployment programs. This campaign is part of a national movement to fund excluded workers, now and for the long term.
Health4All: SB 56 (Durazo) / AB 4 (Arambula): Removes immigration status as an eligibility barrier to comprehensive health coverage, ensuring all income-eligible Californians ages 26-49 can enroll in Medi-Cal regardless of status. In addition, advocates are pushing for an earlier implementation date for this population than the Governor’s January proposal to implement this program in 2024.
Food4All: SB 464 (Hurtado): Modernizes the California Food Assistance Program (CFAP) to provide state-funded food access benefits to all Californians who are currently ineligible for CalFresh due to their immigration status, and builds upon the Governor’s January proposal to extend food accessibility to those ages 55 and up.
AB 1766 (Stone): Expands access to DMV-issued state identification cards to all Californians, regardless of immigration status. Lack of identification is one of the largest barriers to successful reentry into the community as identification is essential to securing housing, social services, and other benefits.
AB 937 (Carrillo): Protects immigrants from being subject to double punishment and funneled to ICE for deportation after they are eligible for release from state prison or local jail, and prohibits the use of immigration status to deny incarcerated community members access to diversion, rehabilitative, mental health and credit earning programs.
SB 583 (Newman): Streamlines and secures California’s voter registration system to more effectively and efficiently verify voter registration eligibility. Under SB 583, an unregistered eligible adult who is verified as a U.S. citizen during an agency transaction will automatically be added to voter registration rolls, while existing registrants will automatically have their address or name updated. This will create more accurate and complete voter rolls; reduce human error; and maximize safeguards for non-citizens interacting with these agencies.
If you have any questions about the other bills that CIPC is supporting this year, please contact Connie Choi at firstname.lastname@example.org or Alexis Castro at email@example.com.
2022 Immigrant Day of Action: Join Us on April 26!
On April 26, advocates, leaders, community members and CIPC will summon our collective power virtually for our Immigrant Day of Action (IDA). On IDA, we will be urging the Governor and Legislature to make equitable investments and pass laws that transform our neighborhoods into communities where all Californians are safe, healthy, and financially secure. The Immigrant Equity Budget (IEB) and the bills in this year’s IDA platform will advance community health, racial justice, workers’ rights, and a safety net for all Californians. Please register to attend, and/or consider joining us as a sponsor to help others attend as well!
Click here to register for 2022 Immigrant Day of Action
Please contact Anthony Rubio at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about our sponsorship opportunities.