On the campaign trail, then-candidate Donald Trump promised to make a lot of cuts to domestic programs. However, one program he promised to shield was the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program. But now, as discussed in a recent article from the Huffington Post, Mr. Trump’s latest budget plan his administration released to Congress and the American public calls for massive cuts.
Specifically, the new budget calls for $72 billion to be cut from the Social Security disability budget over the next 10 years, and this amounts to around a 4 percent reduction. This is part of the administration’s stated goal of balancing the federal budget while at the same time, massively increasing military spending.While 4 percent may not seem like a huge cut, the budget is already insufficient to cover the cost of providing much-needed disability benefits to the approximately 11 million Americans who are currently receiving disability benefits, so unless there are significant increases, not decreases, the program will continue to be in real trouble. Another issue is that the same budget would make around $800 billion in Medicaid cuts over the same time period.
As our Boston Social Security Disability Insurance benefits attorneys can explain, Medicaid works hand in hand with the Social Security disability programs. Once you are on Social Security Disability Insurances benefits, after a statutory waiting period, you can apply for Medicaid benefits to cover your healthcare needs. This is very helpful, because you are not going to be working if you are disabled. If you did not have Medicaid while on SSDI, you might not have access to treatment and rehabilitation services that might be needed.
One of the reasons those in support of cuts to the SSDI program claim such actions are justified is the claim that disability fraud has run rampant. While it is true that there are some cases of disability fraud, the program has less than a one percent fraud rate according to testimony before Congress by the inspector general. This is an incredibly low fraud rate, yet the narrative of widespread fraud keeps getting pushed to garner public support for what really amounts to harming millions of Americans who depend on these benefits to make ends meet and take care of themselves and their families.
Fortunately for those on Social Security Disability Insurance benefits and those who are going to be applying in the near future, both the Democrats and the GOP have said this budget is “dead on arrival,” and they will be working on a new budget in Congress to send to the president.
While we have no idea what this new budget will look like, we can only hope it does not include any cuts to Social Security disability programs.
The White House, through budget director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mick Mulvaney, continues to stand behind its latest budget and claims that these reductions would only remove those who are not truly disabled from the disability rolls. However, there has been no explanation as to how this will happen, and many are skeptical of this claim.
If you or a loved one is seeking Social Security Disability Insurance in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at (617) 777-7777.
Donald Trump’s Budget Betrays His Pledge Not To Cut Social Security, May 23, 2017, By Arthur Delaney and Daniel Marans, Huffington Post
More Blog Entries:
Acting Social Security Administration Commissioner Resigns, Feb. 6, 2017, Boston SSDI Lawyer Blog