DeVos bars undocumented college students from emergency aid

The new guidance prevents undocumented students from accessing the money, although the law includes no explicit restrictions on which students could receive the grants.

DeVos bars undocumented college students from emergency aid

The Trump administration on Tuesday prohibited undocumented college students from receiving emergency federal cash assistance for expenses like food, child care and housing.

The economic rescue law passed by Congress gives $6 billion to colleges to dole out to students for expenses stemming from the disruption on campuses caused by the pandemic. But Education Department officials in new guidance said the money can go only to students who qualify for federal financial aid — U.S. citizens and some legal permanent residents.

That prevents undocumented students from accessing the money, although the law includes no explicit restrictions on which students could receive the emergency grants.

The group that won't receive assistance includes hundreds of thousands of members of the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which has provided work authorization and deportation protections for undocumented people who were illegally brought to the United States as children or overstayed a visa. The Supreme Court is considering whether the program should continue and is expected to issue a decision by June.

Aides to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said she is following the economic relief law. “The CARES Act makes clear that this taxpayer funded relief fund should be targeted to U.S. citizens, which is consistently echoed throughout the law,” Education Department spokesperson Liz Hill said in a statement.

The Education Department's $6 billion for the cash grants has been slow to reach campuses and and officials have traded accusations with college leaders over the pace of the rollout. As of last week, less than 1 percent of the money had been distributed by the Education Department.

Higher education leaders had specifically asked the Education Department for advice on whether they could use the money to assist DACA recipients.

But the guidance released on Tuesday makes clear that undocumented students cannot receive any of the education stimulus money.

The policy says that students must have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid — or at least be eligible to file the form, known as the FAFSA — in order to be eligible for the emergency aid. Undocumented students are not eligible for most types of financial aid provided by the federal government, though they qualify for assistance under some state-based financial aid programs.

The Education Department also said that colleges must provide the emergency cash grants only to students who were studying, at least partially, at physical campuses. Students enrolled in an exclusively online program before the coronavirus pandemic are prohibited from receiving money under the program, according to the guidance.

Source : Politico USA More   

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‘An even deeper emergency’: U.N. chief says there’s a bigger threat than coronavirus

In Earth Day speech, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will challenge President Donald Trump on fossil fuel subsidies.

‘An even deeper emergency’: U.N. chief says there’s a bigger threat than coronavirus

NEW YORK — United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres will use a speech marking the 50th Earth Day on Wednesday to confront President Donald Trump and directly link coronavirus with climate change.

The stark language of Guterres’ prepared remarks, obtained by POLITICO, marks a new willingness by the U.N. chief to challenge the Trump administration, which recently, the U.N. health agency, and formally withdrew from the U.N.'s landmark 2015 Paris climate change agreement last year.

Guterres will push for an end to fossil fuel subsidies at a time when both oil companies and households are struggling to pay their bills. Trump committed Tuesday after crude oil futures prices dipped into negative territory for the first time in history.

The, according to a 2019 International Monetary Fund report. Guterres is expected to say: “Fossil fuel subsidies must end, and polluters must start paying for their pollution.”

With many health systems and medical supply chains at breaking point, Guterres will say that while “the impact of the coronavirus is both immediate and dreadful,” there’s an “even deeper emergency — the planet’s unfolding environmental crisis.”

Guterres will argue that "climate disruption is approaching a point of no return,” adding that “greenhouse gases, just like viruses, do not respect national boundaries.”

Guterres will also propose that “where taxpayers’ money is used to rescue businesses, it needs to be tied to achieving green jobs and sustainable growth,” mirroring the demands of many Democratic lawmakers. "Public funds should be used to invest in the future, not the past, and flow to sustainable sectors and projects," Guterres is expected to say.

For much of his tenure, Guterres has tended to tiptoe around the Trump administration, in an effort to protect U.S. funding that the U.N. desperately needs to maintain its field operations, and because he fears the world splitting in two, around Chinese and American poles.

In 2019 Guterres stepped up his rhetoric on the threats to the climate, directly calling for .

Source : Politico USA More   

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