Thursday, June 28, 2012

Save General Assistance!


Rep. Murt (R-Montgomery Co) has filed Amendment 12224 to the budget bill
(SB 1466 PN 2261). This amendment will partially restore General
Assistance, a last-resort program that provides a critical bridge to
stability and self-sufficiency for 70,000 Pennsylvanians.
Under the amendment, the General Assistance program will be reformed,
saving Pennsylvania over $108 million per year by eliminating
eligibility for Pennsylvanians whose disabilities are projected to last
less than 12 months. It will preserve General Assistance for
* domestic violence survivors (for 9 months in one's lifetime)
* children being cared for by non-relatives
* people with more serious disabilities and illnesses who are waiting
for a decision on their SSI or SSDI application from the Social Security
Administration
* people who are actively enrolled in drug & alcohol treatment
programs (for 9 months in one's lifetime).
If this amendment fails concerning the General Assistance program, which
was created during the depths of the Great Depression to provide a
hand-up to our most vulnerable Pennsylvanians, will be eliminated. And
General Assistance recipients will not simply vanish. They will flood
shelters, soup kitchens, churches and other houses of worship, and
overwhelm our human service providers. In the end, eliminating General
Assistance will cost far more than it will save.
Please contact your House member by phone or email. Use the first action item (Urge your House Member to Vote yes on Amendment 12224 to SB 1466 PN 2261 ).

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