May 13, 2022
Sacramento, Calif.— Today, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced the revision of his proposed state budget for 2022, which included a historic proposal to position California as the first state to make comprehensive healthcare a reality for all income-eligible Californians, regardless of immigration status, closing the gap in Medi-Cal coverage for low-income undocumented adults ages 26-49. The governor also included removal of exclusions from food assistance for income-eligible Californians ages 55 and older.
As we enter the third year of the pandemic, many in our state still don’t have access to a safety net, even as they contribute to their communities and the economy. Stagnant wages and widening income disparities have contributed to increasing homelessness, food insecurity, debt, mental health issues, and other drivers of inequality. If we have learned anything from this pandemic, it’s that everyone–our neighbors, friends and colleagues–need support as we continue to adjust and adapt to a California facing climate change, inflation, and COVID-19.
Cynthia Buiza, Executive Director of the California Immigrant Policy Center, said:
“With California’s record budget surplus this year, we are thrilled to see that Governor Newsom is proposing strategic, long-term investments in the health and well-being of all Californians, regardless of immigration status. At a time when we are collectively trying to recover, and feel safe and secure once more, these investments are imperative to creating a state where everyone can thrive. This progress would not have been possible without immigrants, advocates, and legislative champions who have worked for years to make this vision of Health4All and Food4All for immigrant Californians a reality.
“This pandemic has exacerbated latent disparities in California. With this record surplus, our leaders can do more to support our immigrant neighbors.
“We urge Governor Newsom and the legislature to examine the remaining historic exclusions that have prevented so many Californians from accessing their basic needs. Let us continue the momentum by addressing ‘age-outs’ to Medi-Cal, a financial safety net for those without unemployment benefits, and remove all exclusions to CalFresh (formerly the California Food Assistance Program) so that everyone in the state – children, parents, workers – has the resources they need to care for themselves and their loved ones.”
The California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC) is a statewide immigrant rights organization that advocates for policies that protect and advance the rights of immigrants and their families throughout California. CIPC combines legislative and policy advocacy, strategic communications, statewide organizing, and regional coalition capacity building to pursue its mission of advocating for policies that uphold the humanity of immigrants and refugees while advancing racial, social, and economic justice.