Disabled, ill and very poor Minnesotans are still in the bull’s eye.
The state’s ailing budget moves to the forefront. Now the battle is not health care — but basic survival level income for very poor disabled and ill Minnesotans.
We need you to keep up the momentum from the SAVE GAMC campaign and turn that energy into saving what is left of the safety net.
The Governor has proposed eliminating General Assistance, taking away state welfare-to-work assistance from families with disabled parents and children and eliminating the emergency program that helps keep the state’s poorest adults from homelessness. We must be sure the Minnesota House and Senate protect these programs, and the people they serve, in their budget bills.
Join us in our campaign to advocate that every unemployed Minnesotan has a safety net – including low-wage workers and those living with disabilities or serious illnesses.
and the Minnesota Family Investment Program:
Just as important as unemployment insurance during a recession.
General Assistance and MFIP offer income support to low-wage workers who become seriously ill, disabled or cannot find work.
- 64% of the men and women who turn to General Assistance are seriously ill and unable to work during their illness.
- The most common reason a parent enrolls on the Minnesota Family Investment Program is just having lost a job. They are most likely to have worked in retail, hotel/restaurant, temporary agencies or health care.
Work protections do not exist evenly for all workers
- Only 50% of unemployed workers in Minnesota collect unemployment insurance.
- Only 33% of U.S. workers earning $10.50 an hour or less have paid sick leave — while 81% of those earning more than $24 an hour do.
- Only one-third of Minnesota employers offer paid sick leave and one in 10 employers offer paid time off (which combines paid sick leave, vacation and personal leave).
- Only half of Minnesota’s workers are offered short or long-term disability insurance through their employers; only 10% of part-time workers are offered the coverage.
The spending on these programs has not been increasing.
- The combined state spending on General Assistance and the Minnesota Family Investment Program is barely one half of one percent.
- Minnesota has not increased the assistance Minnesotans receive in these programs since 1986: someone on General Assistance receives $203 a month; a parent with two children on the Minnesota Family Investment Program receives $532 a month.
- The state budget forecast expects a decline in state spending on MFIP for the second year in a row and only a 1% increase in spending for General Assistance.
33,000 Minnesota men and women receive General Assistance benefits in a month. 29,000 Minnesota families receive cash assistance in a month. They rely on this income assistance when illness, disability, lost transportation or child care, changing shift demands or reduced hours mean a lost job. General Assistance and MFIP are bare-bones substitutes for unemployment insurance, paid sick leave, short and long-term disabilities and living wages that can cover not only shelter, food and clothing but transportation and child care costs.