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Low-income and Undocumented Californians Struggle with Mental Health

By Patricia Malagon, Paulette Cha, Shalini Mustala

Nearly one in five low-income adults in California report having serious psychological distress, and those who are undocumented can face barriers to care. California has taken steps to improve access to mental health care, such as expanding Medi-Cal to all low-income residents regardless of age or immigration status, effective January 2024.

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Access to Mental Health Providers Is Highly Uneven Across the State

By Shannon McConville

At a time of growing demand for mental health services, regional disparities in the availability of providers--such as psychologists, licensed clinical social workers, and marriage and family therapists—are a persistent challenge.

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Commentary: The Importance of Californians’ Views on Immigration Policies

By Mark Baldassare

With its large immigrant population, California is highly impacted by global migration trends as well as by immigration policy and politics at the national level. While large majorities of Californians hold a positive view of immigrants and support immigration policy changes, a deep partisan divide remains.

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Keeping Students Fed When School Is Out

By Caroline Danielson

The end of the academic year can increase food insecurity for California families that rely on free meals provided at school. Plans to permanently add a second mode of assistance—debit cards that can be used for groceries—aim to help families feed their children when school is out.

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Improving Lives through Public Policy

By Tani Cantil-Sakauye

President and CEO Tani Cantil-Sakauye reflects on the role that PPIC’s independent, nonpartisan research plays in helping to improve Californians’ physical, educational, and economic well-being.

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