FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 27, 2012
CONTACT: Steve Smith (510) 326-4644
New AFL-CIO Report Shows Millions of Californians Could Be Harmed By Lame Duck Congressional Deal to Cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid
Cuts to Social Security would affect nearly 5 million Californians; Medicaid cuts would impact a million seniors and more than 4 million children
More from the report at http://bit.ly/1119SsR
Oakland, California - According to a new report released by the AFL-CIO, nearly 5 million Californians could be negatively impacted if Congress attempts cuts to Social Security, including 662,232 people with disabilities and 364,365 children. Of the 11 million Californians who get their health care coverage from Medicaid, 4.4 million children and nearly a million seniors could be affected if the lame duck Congress makes cuts to Medicaid benefits.
Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid combined deliver $156.7 billion per year into California’s economy. As the so-called “fiscal cliff” approaches, members of Congress have suggested cutting these vital programs, even while calling for extending the tax cuts for the richest 2%. If those tax cuts are renewed, the richest 2% in California would receive an average tax break of $30,820, while the rest of Californians would receive an average of $1,440. The 2012 House Republican budget plan would cut federal support to California’s Medicaid program by at least $85 billion (22%) over 10 years.
“We can’t afford to let lame duck legislators in Washington play politics with our social safety net,” said California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski. “We need to protect Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security benefits for those among us who need it the most. Retirees, people with disabilities and children shouldn’t have to suffer because some in Congress want to give more tax breaks to the richest 2%. It’s time for the rich to pay their fair share, and it’s time for our elected officials to strengthen these and other vital programs that create jobs and support the middle class.”
California’s working families have been mobilizing around the lame duck session and will continue calling on Congress to end tax cuts for the richest 2% and to say no to cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. For more information and highlights from the report, visit http://bit.ly/1119SsR.