June 4, 2019
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) recently proposed a change to the methodology used to determine the poverty threshold that would affect programs using the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) poverty guidelines to assess eligibility such as Medicaid, Medicare, SNAP, and subsidized school meals. By lowering the poverty threshold over time, this policy change would reduce or eliminate assistance for millions of low- and moderate-income Americans.
OMB proposes to tie the rate of inflation that is used to adjust the Census Bureau’s Official Poverty Measure to one that rises more slowly. This change would weaken how the poverty definition keeps pace with the cost of living and as costs go up, people with low pay would fall above the income-eligibility cutoffs and gradually lose public benefits for which they would have otherwise qualified. This change could result in the denial of benefits for millions of individuals who are truly in need of assistance and have a significant impact upon the Jewish community, Jewish agencies, employees, and clients.
It is critical that we speak out against this proposed policy change and that OMB hear from you about how your agency will be impacted. OMB is seeking written comments on this proposal until Friday, June 21st.
NJHSA is submitting its own comment together with JFNA, but it is crucial for the Administration to hear from local Jewish agencies as well.
We have made it easy to submit a comment by using this template.
OMB’s proposal will impact many programs, but we have focused on Medicaid, CHIP, and SNAP as most relevant to our agencies in general. Feel free to highlight the impact on the specific programs relevant to your community. Click here to view a full list of affected programs.
Submit your comment via this portal by June 21st at 11:59 PM. View instructions for how to submit your comment here. Please email Darcy Hirsh, NJHSA Washington Representative, a copy of your submitted comment so that we can track the community response.
If you have questions, please contact Darcy Hirsh. Thank you for your advocacy.