On Tuesday the governor of Michigan signed into law a very strict limit on how long a person can receive welfare. The law states that a recipient on welfare will have a “four year lifetime limit.” This means that approximately forty one thousand residents will not be receiving cash assistance on the first of October. This total includes twenty nine thousand seven hundred children. This new law does not mean that everyone receiving cash assistance will lose them because there will be exemptions to the law.
These exemptions, at this time, include the following:
- People who have a disability and cannot work
- People who care for a spouse or child that is disabled
- People who are age 65 or older and do not qualify for Social Security benefits
- People who receive very low benefits from Social Security
- Victims of domestic violence may be exempted temporarily
The governor states that he wants to return cash assistance to what it was originally intended for and that is as a transitional program which would help a family while they are working toward being self sufficient. Programs such as health coverage through Medicaid, emergency services, child care, and food stamps are not going to be hurt and will still be offered to the poor.
This new law is expected to reduce the number of adults and children from two hundred twenty one thousand to one hundred eighty thousand which is equal to almost a fifth of those receiving cash assistance. This law will also save the state more than sixty million dollars every year. Surely, and hopefully, other (all) states will follow suit shortly.