Systemic injustice and legal crises don’t go away because of a virus. For those experiencing food insecurity, in need of medical support, and more, please check out the resources below provided by our friends at Lawyers for Civil Rights Boston:
Need Legal Help or Support During COVID-19?
The public health crisis is unfolding rapidly so Lawyers for Civil Rights Boston created a landing page to share multilingual information. This information is accurate as of March 16.
If you are undocumented and need healthcare, you may be eligible for MassHealth Limited, which provides care for medical emergencies, including visits to an emergency room. Public charge does not apply to MassHealth Limited. Visit the MA Connector or call 1-800-841-2900 for English and Spanish service.
All health insurance carriers are required to provide medically necessary telehealth, testing, counseling, treatment, and vaccination (once it’s developed and available) services without charging copays and coinsurance or applying a deductible.
Many cities and towns will continue to provide free breakfast and lunch to students in their respective districts. Click on the city to see their meal schedules and locations: Boston, Brockton, Cambridge, Chelsea, Lawrence, and Lowell.
You may be eligible for unemployment benefits if you are quarantined or if you left work due to risk of exposure or to care for a family member. You don’t have to provide medical documentation, but you must: (1) remain in contact with your employer, and; (2) be available for work your employer may have that you’re able to do. To apply, please visit the Unemployment Assistance website. The state is moving to waive the one week waiting period for benefits.
Undocumented residents are not eligible for unemployment benefits. Lawyers for Civil Rights Boston is advocating for the creation of a Fund for Affected Individuals and Families to support people who don’t qualify for Unemployment assistance.
The Massachusetts Attorney General is accepting online complaints related to minimum wage, overtime payment, sick time, meal breaks, and worker protections. You can file a complaint with the Fair Labor Division here or call the hotline at 617-727-3465.
Victims and Witnesses of Crime
If you are the victim or witness of a crime, please file a report with the police or the District Attorney’s office. You have the right to report a crime even if you are undocumented. Immigration is prohibited from conducted arrests in Massachusetts state courthouses.
Driver’s Licenses (RMV)
The RMV will implement a 60-day extension to the current expiration date for Class D, Class DMs, ID cards, and Learner’s Permits within the RMV system. All individuals with expired/expiring credentials dated between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020, will continue to have an active status until sixty (60) days after the expiration date printed on their credential. This does not apply to immigrants whose end of stay in the United States is the same as the expiration date on their driver’s license, ID card, or Learner’s Permit.
Public Charge and Immigration Issues
Seeking testing, treatment, or preventative care for coronavirus will not be used against anyone in any public charge analysis. Remember that using public benefits will not impact you if you are a green card holder, U.S. citizen, refugee, asylum seeker, VAWA recipient, TPS holder, or holder of a U or T visa. Many benefits, including CHIP, WIC, LiHEAP, SSDI, free school lunch, and disaster relief, are not included in public charge. You can always call LCR’s English-Spanish public charge hotline at 617-988-0609 with any questions.
For assistance, call Lawyers for Civil Rights at 617-981-4308 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
This information is accurate as of 5 PM on Monday, March 16, 2020.
Visit lawyersforcivilrights/coronavirus for regular updates.
Esta información está disponible en español aquí y en nuestra página de recursos del Coronavirus.
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