Action Alert!

By Regional Directors. Filed in SANYS News  |   
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CUTTING MEDICAID HARMS NEW YORKERS WITH DISABILITIES
MEDICAID FUNDS 90% OF NEW YORK’S DISABILITY PROGRAMS AND SERVICES
The American Health Care act (AHCA) federally seeks to cut Medicaid by $880 billion over the next decade. Cutting Medicaid would harm New Yorkers with disabilities because Medicaid funds 90% of the long-term supports and services that improve their health, quality of life, and access to the community.

NEW YORK DISABILITY PROGRAMS & SERVICES WOULD BE REDUCED OR ELIMINATED
Medicaid supports 713,600 New Yorkers with disabilities, including nearly 121,000 children. NY’s Medicaid Director states that if the AHCA were enacted, it would cut NY’s Medicaid funding by $240 million this fiscal year, and ultimately cut NY’s Medicaid funding by $6.9 billion each year. Disability programs and services would be reduced or eliminated. Since home and community-based services are not mandatory, they will likely be cut first. This would result in longer waiting lists for services, a worse staff shortage, and those with disabilities losing their independence and becoming isolated from their communities.

SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS COULD LOSE MEDICAID FUNDING
AHCA targets special education by allowing states to remove school districts’ eligibility as Medicaid providers. School districts rely on Medicaid to reimburse costs of equipment and preventative care for students with disabilities, including durable medical equipment, physical therapy, and speech services. Since school district budgets are already tight, any loss of Medicaid funding could deny students with disabilities the opportunity to advance their learning, skills, and potential.

CUTTING MEDICAID COULD REDUCE TAX REVENUE AND INCREASE UNEMPLOYMENT
Medicaid funding provided to organizations that serve people with disabilities, not only improves the lives of those people and their families with supports and services, but also improves the local and state economy by providing jobs and stimulating commerce. Cutting Medicaid could reduce tax revenue and increase unemployment.

DIRECT CARE WORKER WAGE INCREASES AT RISK
NY’s enacted budget includes funding to provide wage increases to direct care workers to help stabilize the workforce crisis that has developed due to low wages and retention issues. These #bFair2DirectCare wage increases are at risk if Medicaid is cut because the Governor has the authority to reduce state expenditures if federal revenue declines.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?
There’s still time to SAVE MEDICAID:
 CALL AND EMAIL U.S. Senators and Members of Congress
 SPEAK UP at Town Hall Meetings
 SUBMIT Letters to the Editor
 POST on Social Media @SpecificLegislators Using Hashtags Like #SaveMedicaid and/or #AHCA #bFair2DirectCare bfair2directcare@gmail.com