AFL-CIO Report: Over 3 Million New Yorkers Could Be Harmed By Lame Duck Cuts to Social Security

Cuts to Medicaid could affect 2 million children and nearly 600,000 seniors in New York

ALBANY, NY (11/27/2012)(readMedia)--

As the so-called "fiscal cliff" approaches, some members of Congress have suggested cuts to benefits for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid even while calling for renewing tax cuts for the richest 2%. A new report released by the national AFL-CIO reveals the devastating impact those actions would have on New York. The report release coincides with a Lobby Day in Washington DC where union representatives and working family advocates are asking members of Congress to let the Bush tax cuts for the top 2% expire and to say no to benefit cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

According to the report, 3,280,575 New Yorkers could be negatively impacted if Congress cuts Social Security, including 490,662 people with disabilities and 259,461 children. Of the 5,208,135 New Yorkers who get their health care coverage from Medicaid, 2,000,744 children and 591,892 seniors could be affected if the lame duck Congress makes cuts to Medicaid benefits. In addition, these cuts would have a negative impact on the New York's economy, as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid combined deliver $128.3 billion per year into the state.

Astonishingly, calls for destructive cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are coupled with misguided advocacy to renew the Bush tax cuts for those that need them least. Under the Bush cuts, the richest 2% of New Yorkers, who earn an average income of $921,510, receive an extra $39,060 on average in tax cuts.

"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%," said New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento. "It's time for the richest 2% to pay their fair share and for our elected officials to strengthen programs that create jobs and rebuild the middle class, while protecting the social safety net."

New York'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 benefits for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

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