Illegal immigration with a world view and Christian view

In 1994, California voters approved Proposition 187, legislation to restrict or eliminate access by illegal immigrants to a variety of public services, including health care. One provision requires that health care providers and other report suspected illegal aliens to authorities: “If any publicly-funded health care facility in this state from whom a person seeks health care services, other than emergency medical care as required by federal law, determines or reasonably suspects, based upon the information provided to it, that the person is an alien in the United States in violation of federal law, the following shall be followed by the facility: (1) the facility shall not provide the person with services; (2) the facility shall, in writing, notify the person of his or her apparent illegal immigration status, and that the person must either obtain legal status or leave the United States; (3) the facility shall also notify the State Director of Health Services, the Attorney General of California, and the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service of the apparent illegal status, and shall provide any additional information that may be request by any other public entity.” After the legislation passed, there were a number of reports that illegal immigrants were forgoing health care for fear of being deported. In some cases, according to initial reports, patient loads at some clinics declined 20%. Elsewhere, there were fears of increase in rates of tuberculosis (TB) infections. A Hospital Council of Southern California spokesperson called Proposition 187 “a public health nightmare”. Do undocumented aliens have a right to health care? Should their care be paid for by taxes collected from legal residents of the US? Should health care workers be required to turn illegal immigrants over to authorities? Take a world view position and a Christian world view position on this issue.

 

 

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