APHSA has submitted comments in response to a proposed rule from the Social Security Administration that would increase the frequency of redetermination reviews for many individuals receiving disability benefits. The proposed rule would add further stress on individuals to navigate an already burdened system, particularly impacting children and individuals with behavioral health needs. Read our Comment Letter here.
On Monday, January 27th, the Supreme Court ruled that the Administration can implement its "public charge" rule, which allows the Department of Homeland Security to consider receipt of SNAP, Medicaid, and housing vouchers when considering applications for admission, extension, or change to nonimmigrant status for non-exempt aliens. As additional details come out, APHSA will continue to provide updates. Read our Public Charge Frequently Asked Questions here.
The Call for Presentations is now open for the 2020 APHSA National Health and Human Services Summit. This year's theme is "Relentless Pursuit... Unlimited Possibilities." Deadline for submission is February 19. Submit today.
On December 19, Congress finalized FY2020 appropriations for all federal agencies. The final bill also extends funding authority through May 22 for several key human services programs, including the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and Child Care Entitlements to States, and provides transitional funding for the Family First Prevention Services Act.
APHSA has summarized funding details for human services programs to keep human services agencies informed on funding impacts to state and local services. Read APHSA FY 2020 Human Services Budget Overview here.
On December 4th, the Trump administration finalized a rule tightening work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) projects that the final rule will cut $5.48 billion in nutrition supports for SNAP recipients in the next 5 years resulting in approximately 700,000 people losing access to the basic resources we all need to live healthy and thrive. To read our summary of the Final Rule: SNAP Requirements for Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents click here.
The APHSA aims to influence policies that support the health and well-being of all people that lead to stronger communities. Unfortunately, this rule strongly conflicts with our mission as well as the values that our members — state and local health and human services agencies — seek to advance. SNAP is a key building block to improve nutrition and provide important bridge supports for those affected by job loss and other unexpected life setbacks. SNAP is also a key element to prevent more destabilizing and costly problems down the road in health, nutrition, family stability, and independence. In addition to lifting up individuals and families, SNAP is a strong economic driver in our communities; every dollar in SNAP spending leads to an increase in GDP between $0.80 and $1.50.
This new rule also limits the flexibility that state and local leaders have to respond to local and regional economic downturns and to meet the needs of individuals and their communities. Responding to unemployment and economic disruptions in communities remains an issue best understood and addressed by state and local leaders.
It is important that local, state, and federal leaders work together to provide meaningful work opportunities for all people. By USDA’s own analysis, more than 700,000 individuals will not maintain access to SNAP benefits — including youth transitioning from the child welfare system, young adults experiencing homelessness, and workers unable to find full-time employment. Despite this new rule, which is set to take effect on April 1, 2020, APHSA continues to advocate for federal policies that lay the foundation for all people in our country to live healthy and thrive.
To review comments submitted by APHSA and our affinity group, the American Association of SNAP Directors (AASD), related to this rule and others impacting access and eligibility to SNAP, please visit our Policy page.