CA Budget Leaves Undocumented Seniors Without Access to Life-Saving Care

SAN DIEGO, CA — The California Legislature’s Budget Conference Committee announced a deal for California’s 2020 budget to offer healthcare for young undocumented adults — the first state in the country to do so — while excluding vulnerable undocumented seniors.

The deal is expected to be voted by the state Senate and Assembly, and then be sent to Gov. Gavin Newsom next week for his signature.

The deal extends healthcare for undocumented immigrants between the ages of 19 and 25. The deal, however, falls short in including health coverage to undocumented seniors over the age of 65 who need health care the most.

Lillian Serrano, chair of The San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium, has issued the following statement:

“This is a bittersweet moment for us. While our state has made history by extending healthcare coverage to young undocumented adults, it has missed an opportunity to include older Californians, including undocumented senior citizens, who may need the care the most. California could’ve led the way and set an example for other states to offer health care for all.

The deal affects hundreds of thousands of people like myself who have close family members who will not have access to life-saving care due to their immigration status. I recently had a family member die from a treatable illness because of this lack of access, and I pray that my family does not experience another brutal, heartbreaking, and otherwise-preventable loss of life because of the inability to access needed care.”

About the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium

The San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium is a project of Alliance San Diego. Since 2007, community, faith, labor, and legal organizations have come together as the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (SDIRC). Through SDIRC, these organizations are pursuing four common goals: support comprehensive immigration reform; stop the spread of local policies and practices that target and violate the civil and human rights of immigrants; educate immigrants, and educate the public about the important contributions of immigrants. More at: