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Overview

Undocumented Californians and their families are deeply engrained in the state’s social fabric — they are members of the state’s workforce, pay taxes, attend schools, own businesses, and raise families who invest in local communities. Yet, racist and xenophobic federal policies have historically excluded them from accessing comprehensive coverage through Medi-Cal (California’s Medicaid program), also known as full-scope Medi-Cal. In recent years, California has expanded eligibility for full-scope Medi-Cal to undocumented immigrants, including children and young adults up to age 25 as well as adults age 50 and older.

This year, state leaders have the opportunity and resources to expand access to income-eligible undocumented adults ages 26 to 49 — ending the unjust exclusion once and for all. By advancing this policy change along with investing in other equitable health policies that focus on the well-being of communities of color, policymakers can ensure all Californians are valued and have the opportunity to be healthy and thrive.

Here’s a timeline of policy changes that have expanded access to comprehensive Medi-Cal coverage:

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Overview

Democrats control the Assembly and the Senate in California’s Legislature by wide margins that exceed the “supermajority” (two-thirds) threshold. This matters because the state Constitution, as amended by many ballot propositions over the decades, sets a high bar for making some, though not all, budget decisions and policy choices in the Legislature.

For example, the annual budget package generally may be passed by a simple majority vote of each house of the Legislature, as determined by Proposition 25 of 2010. In contrast, any tax increase requires a two-thirds vote of each house under the provisions of Prop. 26 of 2010. Prop. 26 expanded the definition of a tax increase and thus the scope of the two-thirds vote requirement, which was originally imposed by Prop. 13 of 1978. Prior to Prop. 26, bills that increased some taxes but reduced others by an equal or larger amount could be passed by a simple majority vote of each house. Other actions, such as placing constitutional amendments or general obligation bonds on the statewide ballot, also require a two-thirds vote of each house. 

Here is what party control of California’s legislative seats looks like as of September 2021.

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Overview

Child care is critical for working parents, but the high cost of care can be a challenge for families. A very small share of California families with low and moderate incomes receive care through the state’s subsidized child care and development system. Many of these families pay monthly fees into this system — fees that can be unaffordable for families who are living paycheck to paycheck.

Working parents should not have to face impossible choices each month about whether to pay for food, rent, or child care. Learn more about family fees and why policymakers must use state and federal dollars to waive fees, ensure child care providers are supported, and boost families’ economic security.

Infographic title: California Families Pay High Price for Subsidized Child Care

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