Disabled Refugees May Lose Benefits if They Don’t Seek Citizenship in Seven Years

Today’s Miami Herald illuminates the story of disabled political refugees who may lose thier SSI benefits:

Eustacio Guevara spent 14 years in Cuban jails as a political prisoner and when he finally got a visa to relocate to the United States as a refugee in 2000 he thought he would live out his days in Miami free of worries or fears.

“It was like a dream come true,” Guevara, 61, told El Nuevo Herald earlier this month in an interview at his home in Miami’s Allapattah neighborhood.

But Guevara’s dream may become a nightmare.

Guevara is among almost 4,000 refugees from Cuba and other countries scheduled to lose Social Security disability aid Oct. 1 because they are in violation of a federal law that requires disabled foreign refugees to become citizens within seven years of arrival if they want to continue receiving Supplemental Security Income, or SSI.

This month, Guevara received a letter from the Social Security Administration warning that his $505 monthly SSI check may end. Read more: