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By: Lee Savio Beers, MD, FAAP, President, American Academy of Pediatrics
'Today, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) celebrates the end of a damaging, harmful policy that caused immigrant families to forgo needed health care, nutrition, and housing programs. Now that the U.S. Department of Justice chose to stop defending the Trump Administration’s public charge rule, the rule is no longer in effect.
“The public charge rule sowed fear and confusion since a draft proposal first circulated more than four years ago, and today’s decision transforms that fear into a more secure future for immigrant families. Pediatricians have witnessed the chilling effects of the public charge rule in our own patients, with families disenrolling from or avoiding critical health, nutrition and housing programs for which they or their children were eligible.
“In the middle of a pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted Black and Latinx families, we need all federal agencies to make clear, consistent communications to families that they can access needed health care without fear. And we need clear, new regulations that respect the dignity of immigrant communities. We are committed to doing our job as pediatricians, providing care to children and working to ensure they and their families have access to nutritious foods, safe, stable housing, and economic supports.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds