Since it started the COVID-19 pandemic, Thousands of undocumented families and workers in New York City who lost their jobs have had to juggle to make ends meet.
And although immigrants like Samuel Fernandez, who has been without a steady job for almost 8 months, they hoped that if Biden won the elections and the federal government disburses more resources to the City to fight against the devastation of the coronavirus, there could be some kind of direct financial relief, that is not going to happen in the Big Apple.
Individuals and families who do not have papers and who live in the five boroughs, they will not receive any relief checks from the City from New York, which would give them a financial break, as they wanted to do in other cities like Chicago.
So he said it bluntly Mayor Bill de Blasio to El Diario, in a meeting he held with journalists from ethnic media.
“I think sometimes it seems like a sad responsibility to tell people things that are not ideal, or that they do not want to hear and that are not necessarily fair, but we are not in a position as the City to provide direct financial assistance to families who certainly need it, but who are undocumented. We are not in a position to do that, ”said the president, acknowledging that there are many needs, but warning that there will be no direct relief.
“To begin with, we don’t have the money. We do not have a flow of money from the federal government that we can use, and while I have high hopes for a stimulus, I do not see with a Republican Senate, I do not see that stimulus is being built in any way, that it may involve direct financial aid to undocumented people. . I think that’s the sad reality“, He stressed De Blasio.
Despite his crude pronouncement, the Mayor noted that New York City will continue to provide assistance in food and health matters, something that families like Samuel Fernández’s, find it insufficient.
“This mayor like all politicians, like Cuomo is just pure blah blah blah. We are asking that in the future if more resources come to the City they could help us and He is openly telling us that he is going to turn his back on that issue. So they give more money to the City, we are not a priority, ”said the Mexican, quite frustrated. “How sad that he does not even tell us that he is going to make an attempt or look for alternatives, but throws the door in our faces. With those of us who do not have papers, he is just like Trump“.
Despite the signs, De Blasio He insists that his Administration has shown commitment to helping undocumented or mixed families with basic needs that did not qualify for any federal stimulus check or unemployment insurance, many of whom claim to be up to their neck in water.
“The fact is that in this city we support everyone. We stand behind New Yorkers, regardless of their documentation status, with something else, which matters tremendously. Even if it is not direct financial aid, with the food program that we have been providing to all New Yorkers. No New Yorker should go hungry, regardless of the status of the documentation, it is available to everyone, “said the president.
“Health care is available to everyone for free. NYC Care is a plan to provide quality health care through our public hospitals and clinics to any New Yorker, regardless of documentation status (…) no other place in the country has guaranteed health care for everyone, ”added the Mayor. . “And obviously we have the eviction moratorium to make sure people still have a roof over their heads. So, we do a lot, but not everything“.
De Blasio He also assured that under the government of Biden, there will be more chances that an immigration reform will be promoted that helps legalize the undocumented.
“I am hopeful for immigration reform. I think the vast majority of the American people want immigration reform and even many Republicans want immigration reform, which certainly wants to keep the dreamers here. They want to find a better way to allow people to come here and work. They understand that there are so many families that need to reunite, “said the mayor. “I think we have an opportunity for immigration reform, and I think Vice President Biden is exactly the kind of president we need to get there, because he understands how to get the right kind of compromise in the United States Senate. So, I think we could see again in the next few years, comprehensive immigration reform. “
The Commissioner for Immigration Affairs from the city, Bitta Mostofi, He also assured that although there is no direct assistance plan from the Mayor’s Office to deliver money to undocumented families, he highlighted the work that the City has done with the “Open Society Foundation”In the distribution of financial assistance to thousands of people in the Big Apple.
“We reached more than 76,000 people and their families across the city with direct cash assistance. We have also worked closely with the organizations we partner with to make sure they have the ability to enroll these individuals and their families in food assistance programs, which are available to everyone regardless of their status, ”said the official.
Deborah Axt, Co-Executive Director, Make the Road New York, was frustrated at De Blasio’s statements and assured that it is urgent that the municipal government, such as the state governor, also promote direct aid programs for undocumented people, who have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 crisis.
“Eight months after the pandemic, more than a million undocumented New Yorkers are still suffering from the pandemic and the economic crisis, without government help. It is extremely frustrating to hear that Mayor De Blasio and Governor Cuomo continue to make excuses for not providing urgently needed resources to these New Yorkers across the city and state, ”the activist warned. “All levels of government must take swift action to fund excluded workers.”
The City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, did not respond whether or not that agency is willing to promote any initiative to provide money to undocumented families affected by the pandemic, if the new federal government allocates more resources to the City, but was optimistic that the president-elect includes people without papers in new relief.
“Undocumented immigrants need help, both from the federal government and from local governments. Sadly, the Trump Administration did not include them in the federal stimulus package, but I hope President-elect Biden will make sure they get the help they need, “said a Johnson spokesperson.
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