Fri Feb 22, 2013, 08:21 AM
babylonsister (148,908 posts)
Homeless, Hungry, Hung Out to Dry
Homeless, Hungry, Hung Out to Dry
February 19, 2013
The automatic spendings cuts set to go into effect March 1 will have dire consequences for the most vulnerable Americans.
Students at Washington-Lee High School, in Arlington, Virginia. More than 31 million students from low-income families benefit from the the National School Lunch Program, a federally assisted meal program administered by the United States Department of Agriculture.
The phrase “discretionary spending” may not send chills down the spine, and most of the discussion about spending cuts have revolved around entitlements. But discretionary spending supports essential programs that help the poor, fund education, and keep us safe. Here are key examples of the impact these cuts would have should they go into effect March 1:
Nutrition and Health Services
While the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamps, is exempt from sequestration, other nutrition programs aren’t. Child-nutrition programs would be cut by more than $350 million, and the Women, Infants, and Children program—which gives about 9 million low-income mothers and their children supplemental food and provides health-care referrals—would cut off about 600,000 participants. Mothers and children aren’t the only ones who will be impacted, however. Seniors who rely on home-delivered meals will see 4 million fewer of them.
Meanwhile, children’s health programs would be cut by $243 million, meaning 144,000 fewer children would be vaccinated. Cuts to the Maternal & Child Health Block Grant would serve 4.58 million fewer children, women, and families. Cuts to the Mental Health Block Grant program would leave 373,000 mentally ill people without services. Nearly 8,900 homeless people with mental illness would also lose treatment, outreach, housing, and support with cuts to the Projects for Assistance in Transition from Homelessness program.
While new numbers haven’t yet been released, the most disasterous effects of allowing the sequester to take effect would be on jobs. The original sequester would have cut nearly $5 million from Re-employment and Eligibility Assessments, in-person re-employment assistance for those on unemployment. More than 80,000 jobless people would lose these resources. The Employment Service, a system that connects jobseekers with employment opportunities, would reach 1.2 million fewer people. More than 400,000 people would have been dropped from Workforce Investment Act State Grant programs that provide employment and training services. March’s sequester will be smaller, but it will still have a huge impact on these programs. Meanwhile, the White House estimates that a $902 million reduction to the Small Business Administration’s loan guarantees would hamper the ability for small businesses to create jobs, while cuts to the Economic Development Administration would result in 1,000 fewer jobs in the private sector. Federal agencies will have to furlough hundreds of thousands of employees—all this while the unemployment rate stands at 7.9 percent.
There are plenty of other programs that will suffer if the sequester goes through. Even if we might not realize how much federal spending impacts our lives, cuts to these programs would be broadly felt; we all benefit from food safety inspections and job creation. Yet Congress seems determined to let these drastic cuts go through, and Republicans, who originally found them equally unpalatable, have now indicated that they think these cuts could be the best option for deficit reduction. But sequestration is far from a scalpel that can trim the fat off of government. It’s a chainsaw that will tear apart vital programs.
6 replies, 1065 views
Homeless, Hungry, Hung Out to Dry (Original post)
|Bill USA||Feb 2013||#4|
|Name removed||Jul 2013||#6|
Response to babylonsister (Original post)
Fri Feb 22, 2013, 08:29 AM
davidpdx (17,248 posts)
1. Not only that but services for the mentally ill, disabled, and homeless
I was just reading an article about someone who did a study on homeless people and she had worked at a hospital prior to starting her PhD. She stated how helpless she felt at times about not being able to do enough for those in need.
If they don't figure a way out of this the cuts will do so much damage.
Response to RKP5637 (Reply #2)
Fri Feb 22, 2013, 03:06 PM
Macoy51 (239 posts)
3. The Entire Economy Will Take a Huge Hit
The entire economy will take a huge hit when 800,000 federal employees get a 20% cut in pay. (more like a 25% cut in take home pay). That will lead to a down turn in tax revenue, which will mean even greater cuts, and even lower tax revenue. Repeat at length.
Response to Macoy51 (Reply #3)
Fri Feb 22, 2013, 04:07 PM
RKP5637 (32,926 posts)
5. And the most amazing thing is, we do this to ourselves! Sometimes I wonder what the
value is of Congressional overhead. I give them about a 2% approval rating and that is generous.