While President Barack Obama’s 2010 health reform bill, the Affordable Care Act, greatly expanded insurance access, it excluded undocumented immigrants across the country. This likely contributed to COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on undocumented Californians. Health equity and immigrant rights advocates have been urging California leaders to broaden health coverage for nearly a decade.
Growing up in Oakland, I quickly saw first-hand how racism resigns people of color, and Black Americans in particular, to shorter, sicker lives.
Data shows that African Americans in Alameda County live roughly seven years fewer than the county average.
If we act now, we can radically reshape our society in a positive way. Reducing the impact of and ultimately ending systemic racism has to be at the top of the list.
California is home to more than 2 million undocumented immigrants, according to the Public Policy Institute of California. Now, in the unprecedented economic and health emergency of COVID-19, undocumented Californians are among the most vulnerable.
Some immigrant advocacy groups are calling on the state to extend unemployment insurance and the earned income tax credit to undocumented workers to cushion the economic blow from job losses.
As public health officials call on Californians to help stop the spread of the virus, many low-wage workers are being forced to make potentially life-threatening choices: whether to heed the precautions and lose income they rely on, or to show up for work anyway in order to put food on their tables and pay their rent.
These choices could be critical because low-wage earners often have jobs involving interactions with the public, such as serving food, caring for the elderly or cleaning hotel rooms.
Undocumented people are among the most vulnerable populations when it comes to the impact of wildfires.
Should the state create its own disaster relief fund for undocumented residents, rather than relying on non-profits?
The federal administration’s attacks on immigrant families and children have been relentless. An entire generation of children is being traumatized.
As the daughter of immigrants and the president of a children’s advocacy organization that advocates for the healthy development and wellbeing of all children, this period of crisis is both personal and professional.
As a pediatrician, I not only worry about the health of the children I care for, but also the health of their parents and caregivers. Unfortunately, disparities in the wellbeing of children in the United States are climbing.
Improving health equity for children should be among our highest priorities as a nation, because it will impact our future.
The new “public charge” rule is a cruel policy, and it threatens to harm the broader community. Health care costs will certainly rise for everyone if people drop off Medicaid rolls. Some will forgo vaccinations, which has the potential of creating outbreaks of preventable diseases.
Now is the time for California to finish the job of improving our health care system by ensuring communities have the opportunity to be healthy.
Advocates say a plan to turn a grassy lot in Oxnard into a port storage facility is part of a pattern of disregarding poor communities living near California’s ports. These neighborhoods are often saddled with disproportionate amounts of industrial pollution compared to more affluent locales further away from port facilities.