A Guide to the New 'Public Charge' Rules: What is Public Charge and How Can Organizations and Funders Respond to Support Family and Child Well-Being

Thursday, April 19, 2018
1 - 2:30 pm PDT | 2 - 3:30 pm MDT | 3 - 4:30 pm CDT | 4 - 5:30 pm EDT



A young mother who receives food through WIC. An ailing grandfather who gets government support to pay his heating bill. A couple whose children receive vital medical care via the Affordable Care Act. These are just a few of the countless foreign-born individuals who, under a newly proposed federal regulation that expands the definition of ‘public charge,’ could be blocked from obtaining a visa or permanent residency status due to accessing programs that support the health and well-being of their families. This policy change, which is currently under review by the Office for Management and Budget, aims to curtail family immigration by punishing low-income families for participating in health and social services for which their children are eligible. If enacted, families would be forced to choose between fundamental needs, like food and health care, and their future in this country.

This month’s edition of GCIR’s Monthly Immigration Policy Calls will provide an in-depth review of this regulation, explore the meaning of ‘public charge,’ and highlight how a campaign,  “Protecting Immigrant Families, Advancing Our Future,” is uniting a cross-sector of key national, state, and local level organizations to protect and defend access to health care, nutrition programs, public services, and economic supports for immigrants and their families. Join us to learn about specific ways in which funders can respond to this newest development on public charge through strategic grantmaking and using public voice.



  • Olivia Golden, Executive Director, Center for Law and Social Policy
  • Madison Hardee, Senior Policy Analyst/Attorney, Center for Law and Social Policy
  • Marielena Hincapié, Executive Director, National Immigration Law Center (NILC)
  • Laura Speer, Associate Director Policy Reform and Advocacy, Annie E. Casey Foundation


Registration is now closed.

Calls are open to GCIR members, other grantmaking institutions, philanthropic advisors, and members and staff of funder affinity groups and regional associations of grantmakers. (Participation is limited to organizations that share GCIR’s core values.)


Factsheets & Analysis

News Articles & Op-Eds

Monthly Immigration Policy Calls

Held on the third Thursday of each month, GCIR's monthly policy calls provide an update on timely policy issues affecting immigrants and refugees—with an in-depth look at a topic that is particularly relevant or pressing for philanthropy. At critical junctures, we will also produce written policy updates and resource materials to deepen funders’ understanding of key developments and their implications for philanthropy. Please contact Aryah Somers Landsberger, director of programs, with your suggestions on topics, speakers, and resources to share. 


A special thanks to GCIR members and funders for their support in making this program possible.

Photo Credits (from top left): Ray S/CC; Bread for the World/CC; Pan American Health Organization PAHO/CC.