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Pou Urges Wide Inclusion of Immigrant Workers in COVID-19 Relief

Trenton – New Jersey Legislative Latino Caucus Chair Senator Nellie Pou issued a statement today urging the broad inclusion of all New Jersey taxpayers, including those in mixed-status households, in future state and federal action in response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
“In moments like these, partisan politics must be left at the door. The fact is, immigrant taxpayers are on the frontlines of this pandemic, working hard to keep America’s food supply stable, hospitals and businesses clean and deliveries on time. In normal times it is easy to overlook their tireless contribution to our nation but this crisis has made it abundantly clear that they are woven into the lifeblood of not only our economy, but our way of life. We cannot turn our back on them now.
“Congress’ last stimulus intentionally excluded millions of U.S. citizens who have an immigrant household member paying taxes using an Individual Identification Number. This is both cruel and reckless. We are now at the epicenter of this crisis and to flatten the curve we must protect all workers.
“We are all in this together, regardless of documentation or status. Refusing protections and security to over half a million people in New Jersey puts us all at greater risk. We know there will continue to be state and federal action as the pandemic unfolds and as the Chair of the Legislative Latino Caucus I call on both administrations to act outside of politics because the right thing to do is also the safest thing to do. We must include undocumented workers and their U.S. Citizen loved ones on all future legislation or appropriations, for the safety and security of us all.”
The stimulus package Congress approved and President Trump signed last week excludes undocumented immigrant taxpayers and their U.S. citizen family members from receiving stimulus payments and fails to include immigrants, undocumented immigrants, Temporary Protected Status holders and DACA recipients, in health care provisions.