• ১৬ই এপ্রিল, ২০২৪ খ্রিস্টাব্দ , ৩রা বৈশাখ, ১৪৩১ বঙ্গাব্দ , ৭ই শাওয়াল, ১৪৪৫ হিজরি

Illegal Immigrants crisis : How Debit Cards For Migrants Compare to NYC Welfare Benefits

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প্রকাশিত মার্চ ২৮, ২০২৪
Illegal Immigrants crisis : How Debit Cards For Migrants Compare to NYC Welfare Benefits
নিউজটি শেয়ার করুনঃ

Migrants arriving in New York City have received prepaid debit cards which appear to deliver twice as much to spend on essentials as other NYC welfare benefits.

The average family of four’s monthly Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) payment is $713. Under New York’s pilot card scheme the cash totals $1,400 every four weeks.

NYC’s mayor Eric Adams has stressed the cards will cut “20 percent of the migrant costs” in the city. The program has been allocated $53 million, and will replace food boxes provided to migrants living at New York City hotels.

Adams’ cost-saving project is launched at a time when migrant services are desperate for cash as federal funding runs out.

Under Adams’ plan, ten migrant families have been given Immediate Response Cards that will be loaded with $350 a week for a family of four to spend on essential purchases at bodegas, grocery stores, supermarkets and convenience stores. The pilot will be rolled out to 500 people in total, according to Politico.

The cards are being distributed at the Roosevelt Hotel, which has been a shelter for migrants arriving in the city since 2023 and is, according to New York’s Citywide Administrative Services, “the first touchpoint for new arriving asylum seekers.”

Migrants “will be required to sign an affidavit affirming that they will be using these cards for the intended purposes,” and that using the funds for any other reason could result in removal from the pilot, said a spokesperson for Adams.

“Not only will this provide families with the ability to purchase fresh food for their culturally-relevant diets and the baby supplies of their choosing, but the pilot program is expected to save New York City taxpayers more than $600,000 per month and $7 million per year,” a city hall spokesperson told Fox News. “The prepaid cards can be used exclusively at select stores to ensure the money is spent on food and baby supplies.”

Global conflicts and economic deprivation are driving migrant numbers higher, the most recent cause is the breakdown in law and order in Haiti.

New York City officials have said that more than 180,000 asylum-seekers have been processed since spring 2022, in some cases bused in by officials from cities along the U.S. southern border.

How much more will migrants get?

The largest food-related welfare program in the U.S. is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly referred to as food stamps. Similar to the Immediate Response Cards, SNAP is administered via pre-paid electronic benefit transfer cards, and can only be used in participating stores to buy groceries.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) predicted in October 2023 that the average monthly SNAP amount given to a recipient would be $219 for a single-person household for 2024. The average for a family of four will be $713, meaning that if the prediction is correct, the migrant cards are loaded with at least twice that, an estimated $1,516.67 a month.

It is unclear how much a single migrant will receive under the NYC scheme.

SNAP benefits can only be used to buy grocery products, and not to purchase baby supplies. Adams clarified the cards being given to migrants can be used to purchase both.

According to data provided by the NYC Department of Social Services, in 2022 there were 1.71 million residents in the city receiving SNAP benefits.

For those who are unemployed in New York, a typical range of weekly Unemployment Insurance benefits is about $100 to $500 per week, according to ACCESS NYC. How much a claimant receives depends on a person’s past wages from when they were employed.

-Newsweek