By Janlee Wong, NASWCA Executive Director
Ever since the Great Depression when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) began the great tradition of creating social safety net programs to assist the elderly, children, the poor and infirm, Americans have accepted the concept that when there is no one else to help, the government can help. And conservatives have continuously fought to defund these programs as inefficient and not the right approach to helping the “truly needy.”
Now the Trump Administration comes forth with a federal budget proposal to severely slash safety net programs and shift the funding to defense and homeland security. The cuts include:
- Cutting the food assistance program by 25% and shifting 25% of the cost to the state.
- Further cutting Medi-Cal putting an estimated 13 million Californians at risk. This includes cutting the Children’s Health Insurance Program affecting 1 million children.
- Cutting the TANF (CalWorks) program by $370 million (80 percent of the cash goes to support children).
- Cutting the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit $9 billion affecting the aged, blind and disabled.
- Cutting Social Security Disability Benefits (SSDI) $64 billion.
- Cutting $700 million in housing assistance and anti-poverty programs.
- Denying the Child Tax Credit program to American citizen children of immigrant parents.
- Eliminating several K-12 school programs worth $400 million for California schools.
- Providing massive tax cuts to corporations and wealthy Californians.
“This budget proposal is based on utterly bogus economic assumptions. It gives a massive tax break to the wealthiest, while imposing painful and debilitating burdens on tens of millions of decent and hardworking people.” — Governor Jerry Brown
“This budget also focuses on the President’s priorities to shrink the size and scope of the federal government—and that’s good. For too long we have judged federal programs by how much we spend on them rather than on their outcomes.” — House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield)
CALL TO ACTION
Write you member of Congress and tell them you oppose the Trump budget cuts to health and human services. http://cqrcengage.com/socialworkers/?0