The People's Guide

35th Edition 2013-2014

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 61 of 71

The People's Guide 2013-2014 62 If you have questions about immigration or benefits for immigrants, or the government has treated you differently just because you don't speak English, or of the way you look or because you are from a particular country, please call one of the agencies listed on page 65 ("Advice for Immigrants"). DEFERED ACTION Effective June 15, 2012, certain young people who were brought to the United States as young children, do not present a risk to national security or public safety, and meet several key criteria will be considered for relief from removal from the country or from entering into removal proceedings. Those who demonstrate that they meet the criteria will be eligible to receive deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and will be eligible to apply for work authorization. Under this directive, individuals who demonstrate that they meet the following criteria will be eligible for an exercise of discretion, specifically deferred action, on a case by case basis: 1. Came to the United States under the age of sixteen; 2. Have continuously resided in the United States for a least five years preceding the date of this memorandum and are present in the United States on the date of this memorandum; 3. Are currently in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general education development cer- tificate, or are honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; 4. Have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor of- fense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety; 5. Are not above the age of thirty. Only those individuals who can prove through verifiable documentation that they meet these criteria will be eligible for deferred action. For more information visit: USCIS' hotline 1-800-375-5283 ICE's hotline 1-888-351-4024 ment-removal-operations/ero-outreach/ index.htm Certain government programs, are not available to all low income immigrants who are lawfully present in the U.S. Even if you are undocumented, you can apply for CalFresh ( Food Stamps) or CalWORKs for other family members who may be eligible (like for your children born in the U.S.-they are U.S. citizens). If you are an immigrant who has become a U.S. citizen through naturalization, you must be treated the same as other U.S. citizens when you apply for benefits. ALL IMMIGRANTS, INCLUDING UNDOCUMENTED PERSONS, MAY QUALIFY FOR THESE OTHER TYPES OF HELP: • Prenatal Care • Emergency Medi-Cal • Minor Consent Medi-Cal • Regional Centers • California Children's Services • CHDP and CHDP Gateway • Immunizations for kids • WIC • School Breakfast & Lunch • Summer Food • Health Care in some Counties • Public Education • Help from Food Pantries • Help from Shelters • Services from Many Non-Profit Agencies These programs don't have immigration re- quirements and if you are undocumented, you may still qualify. If anyone asks you about your immigration status, be careful. You do not need to tell anyone that you or anyone else who lives with you is undocu- mented. Your workers do not need to ask about your immigration status if you are not getting benefits for yourself. If they do ask you, simply tell them that you are a "not qualified" immigrant ("not qualified" is not the same as undocumented). That is all they need to know. If a school or child care center requests your social security number on a form, you can write "none" on the form or leave it blank. They may not give the information on that form to a government agency. Benefits for Victims of Trafficking, Domes- tic Violence, and Other Serious Crimes California law provides eligible non-citizens who are victims of trafficking, domestic violence and other serious crimes access to benefits equal to those available for refugees. • Victims of trafficking may qualify for up to one year before they are certified by the federal government as victims or obtain T status. • Victims of domestic violence and other serious crimes may qualify once they have applied for U status. • You do not need a social security num- ber to apply. Often, eligible people who need the aid don't get the correct information or get discouraged. If that is happening to you, be strong, insist on talking to a supervisor, and seek out the help of someone who will advocate for you. Insist on speaking to someone who is fluent in your language or call Legal Aid. INTERPRETER HELP If you speak limited English and you need to apply for benefits such as CalWORKs, Medi-Cal, GR, CAPI or CalFresh, you have the right to ask for an interpreter free of charge. The Department of Public Social Services (DPSS), the Department of Health Services (DHS), and the Social Security Administration must provide you with a worker who speaks your language or con- nect you to a telephone interpreter service, at no cost to you. You may also have the right to have written materials translated for you, or if the materials are in English, you have the right to have the information explained to you in your language. DPSS now assigns a supervisor in every office to serve as the District Immigrant Liaison. You should call the District Im- migrant Liaison if: • you are denied assistance because you Guide for Non-Citizens Immigrants who are not citizens can get many kinds of help from the government, even if they don't have a green card. Non-Citizens

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The People's Guide - 35th Edition 2013-2014