Disability rights groups slam Ryan budget

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Ryan Budget Cuts

In what has become an annual ritual, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) has released a budget proposing heavy cuts to health care and other social services, prompting a sharp rebuke from disability advocates.

“The programs that would be cut by Chairman Ryan’s budget make up the safety net for people with disabilities,” said Katy Neas, chairperson for the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities, the nation’s largest coalition of disability advocacy groups, in a statement. “CCD urges Congress to reject the Ryan budget and work across the political aisle on solutions that will strengthen our national economy.”

The proposed budget would repeal the Affordable Care Act, block-grant Medicaid and cut Medicare by $810 million over 10 years by making it a voucher program.

In addition, the proposed budget would cut Supplemental Security Income benefits by $5 billion, and make sharp cuts to the non-defense discretionary budget, impacting “veteran’s services to medical and scientific research, highways, education, housing, transportation and more,” according to the CCD statement.

“Cuts of this magnitude in Medicaid will prevent people with the most severe disabilities from living in the community and avoiding costly institutionalization,” the CCD wrote in the statement. “This change as well as the structural changes to Medicare will result in shifting costs to states and to individual consumers.

“This will put a huge burden on already strained state budgets and will lead to further cuts to human service programs.”

The House of Representatives passed the Ryan Budget on party lines on April 10. It has almost no chance of passing the Senate.