Today, the Trump administration made its latest move to undermine Medicaid—a vital piece of America’s health care social safety net.
The Administration announced a new policy
to let states require people who receive Medicaid to work, with very few exceptions. This means that states will be able to take away Medicaid from people who can’t show that they are working. Millions will lose access to health care.
The Administration claims this misguided policy will “incentivize work and community engagement,” but the truth is that a large portion of Medicaid recipients who are able to work already have jobs. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation report
revealed that most adult Medicaid recipients have jobs, and nearly 80% live in families with at least one worker.
The simple truth is that the policy will create bureaucratic hoops and hurdles and will target Medicaid recipients who have barriers to work that this policy does not address. Research regarding work requirements in other social programs, such as food stamps, shows that these requirements do not increase long-term employment, and instead can entrench people into further impoverishment. Taking away access to essential health care services for low-income individuals will have an even worse impact—making people sicker.
Not only is this bad policy, it is against the law. NCLEJ has advocated to protect access to health care for low-income families for decades. We stand with advocates, community groups, and low-income families who rely on Medicaid to oppose these new requirements.
We will challenge these policies and, as states across the country seek to implement them, we will fight in the Courts to challenge unlawful practices that deny low-income individuals access to needed health care services.
You can join this fight. Make your voice heard. Oppose your state seeking to adopt this horrible policy.
We urge you to support groups such as NCLEJ that will fight against policies and practices that serve no function other than to slash states’ Medicaid rolls.