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Statement on proposed ‘public charge’ rule change

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation—alongside many philanthropic, grantee and partner organizations—recently submitted formal comments to the Department of Homeland Security U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in opposition to the proposed ‘public charge’ rule change.

Children are at the heart of everything we do at the Kellogg Foundation – a directive established by our founder, Will Keith Kellogg. But we know that children live in families and families live in communities. For children to thrive, communities need to be equitable places of opportunity for all, including immigrant parents – many of whom contribute to their communities and to our economic, civic and social vibrancy.

This proposal comes at a time when immigrant communities are particularly vulnerable as a result of several policy recommendations (e.g., the 2017 executive order, proposal to end DACA, Census 2020 citizenship question). Proposals like these, including the rule change under discussion, fuel negative public sentiment and perpetuate a false narrative about immigrant families that stokes the bias, fear and hatred that threaten children in all of our communities.

In the communities where we have made a long-term commitment to children (in Michigan, Mississippi, New Orleans and New Mexico), this proposed rule change undermines the efforts of our partners – the civic leaders, administrators and teachers, health care providers and other nonprofits working to ensure all children thrive. Our statement is in support of their collective efforts, and on behalf of children and their families in many more communities. 

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