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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2006

    This Aunt (Obama's) In Public Housing?

    (Boston, Mass.)

    This aunt in public housing?

    November 10, 2008

    ONYANGO, President-elect Barack Obama's Kenyan aunt, has left her subsidized apartment in a South Boston housing project. Still in evidence are the conflicting housing laws that apply to illegal immigrants like Onyango.

    Under federal law, a family is allowed access to federally subsidized housing provided at least one member is a citizen or eligible noncitizen, such as an alien with permanent resident status. Housing authorities are required to check the status of applicants through databases maintained by the Department of Homeland Security. But no such inquiries can be made for state-subsidized housing, based on a 1977 federal consent decree that places citizenship status out of bounds. Confused? So are officials at the 244 housing authorities across the state who maintain 50,000 state-sponsored units and 34,000 federally sponsored units.

    There should be one set of consistent rules for access to public housing, a limited commodity with lengthy waiting lists. It may not be possible for housing officials to escape all of the absurdities caused by the nation's dysfunctional immigration system. But someone should untangle the knots.

    No one at the state Department of Housing and Community Development can offer an explanation for why illegal immigrants should be allowed access to state-subsidized housing, other than to refer to the 1977 federal consent decree. On its face, it makes no sense to deny low-income citizens or eligible noncitizens access to housing in order to accommodate law-breakers. Republican state Senator Robert Hedlund has filed bills, unsuccessfully, to bring state regulations in line with the federal procedures. That would be fair. If there are legal roadblocks, then the state attorney general's office should provide an opinion on how to remove them.

    The rule covering federally subsidized housing best reflects the reality of "mixed families" consisting of undocumented parents and children born in the United States. In such cases, housing authorities prorate the rent so that needy children get a roof over their heads without requiring taxpayers to shell out for the illegal members of the family. It's about as fair a system as could be expected under the circumstances. One improvement might be to provide local housing authorities with updates on immigration status. Onyango, for example, was an eligible asylum seeker in 2003 when she applied for a subsidized apartment. But the Boston Housing Authority had no way of knowing that her asylum request had been denied at a later date.

    Public housing policy is weak in the immigration area, and it needs to be reinforced.
    "Opinion" ... c_housing/
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  2. #2
    Senior Member crazybird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Joliet, Il
    Maybe someone can shed some light on this. If I'm not mistaken she applied for asylum. They are not required to have the funds legal immigrants have to have. Asylum is assuming people are broke and need of help and may have qualified for help till her hearing. The problem came when she had her hearing and was denied....but welfare wasn't she collected when she wasn't supposed to anymore. One of those wonderful loopholes you can drive a semi through.
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

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