TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – Legislation to require able-bodied adults who receive Medicaid benefits to volunteer for at least 20 hours a week has been introduced in the U.S. House.
On Thursday, June 9, U.S. Congressman Jake LaTurner (R-KS) says he introduced the Jobs and Opportunities for Medicaid Act in the House of Representatives. He said the legislation would require all able-bodied adults to work or volunteer for no less than 20 hours per week to remain eligible for Medicaid benefits.
“The key to growing our economy is getting more Americans back to work. We have countless employers looking for workers right now in Kansas and the ongoing labor shortage is making it difficult for small businesses to stay afloat,” said Rep. Jake LaTurner. “I am proud to introduce the Jobs and Opportunities for Medicaid Act because I believe the best welfare program is a job. This legislation will help able-bodied adults get back into the workforce and end their reliance on taxpayer-funded government assistance.”
When Kansas implemented work requirements and time-limited benefits, LaTurner said the number of able-bodied adults who received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits dropped by 75%. He said nearly 60% of those who left the program found employment within the year and their incomes rose by an average of 127% per year.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, Democrats created a culture of idleness and dependency, as evidenced by the 11.4 million jobs open in this country, 11 million work-ready adults that could fill those jobs, and billions of dollars in increased spending,” said Rep. Rodney Davis. “If families have any chance at keeping up with skyrocketing inflation, which is raging above 8 percent, we have to incentivize work – and that starts with requiring able-bodied SNAP and Medicaid recipients to join, or rejoin, the workforce. I’m proud to join my colleague Rep. LaTurner in introducing this legislation. With smart reforms to federal programs, we can create jobs, grow our economy, and be better stewards of taxpayer dollars.”
While Medicaid is a social welfare program, LaTurner said there does not currently exist any work requirement for able-bodied adults who receive benefits.
LaTurner noted that former President Donald Trump proposed Medicaid work requirements in the form of a community engagement requirement, which saw projected savings of between $130 billion and $152 billion over 10 years.
The Congressman indicated original cosponsors of the bill include Reps. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Dusty Johnson (R-SD), Brian Mast (R-FL), Michael Guest (R-MS), William Timmons (R-SC), Bruce Westerman (R-AR), Jake Ellzey (R-TX), and John Joyce (R-PA).
To read the full text of the Jobs and Opportunities for Medicaid Act, click HERE.
Copyright 2022 WIBW. All rights reserved.