The Seattle City Council passed a resolution Monday asking Gov. Jay Inslee and Washington state lawmakers to help undocumented immigrants who have lost their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic.
The measure urges Inslee and the Legislature to create a “Washington Worker Relief Fund,” with an initial allocation of at least $100 million, “to provide emergency economic assistance to undocumented Washingtonians.” The vote was 9-0, and Mayor Jenny Durkan will add her signature.
The nonbinding resolution, a lobbying move that won’t change conditions on the ground in Seattle, also asks the state leaders to create a wage-replacement system for workers who don’t qualify for regular unemployment benefits.
Undocumented immigrants are barred from federal assistance, so they aren’t getting stimulus checks and they aren’t collecting unemployment benefits.
The Seattle resolution, sponsored by Council President M. Lorena González and Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, says more than 250,000 undocumented immigrants live in Washington. Undocumented immigrants pay various taxes and many children who are U.S. citizens live with undocumented relatives, the resolution says. González’s parents were undocumented when they came to the U.S., she mentioned Monday.
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