General Assistance on chopping block (With Video)

Without the help of the state’s General Assistance cash program, Julie Schnepp said she would still be homeless today.

“It was a bridge to get out,” said Schnepp, 52, of Upper Darby. “It was my lifeline.”

Republican Gov. Tom Corbett’s $27.1 billion budget proposal calls for the elimination of the General Assistance cash program. Michael Froehlich, a staff attorney at Community Legal Services of Philadelphia, said the elimination of the GA program and an anticipated slash in the GA-related medical assistance will result in about $319 million in cuts.

Cuts to the GA program will affect about 68,000 people across the state. About 1,762 Delaware County residents are GA recipients, according to figures from the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare.

 

“This is such a vulnerable group of people, and we understand (this program) is not required by the federal government … but it’s also not like these 1,700 people will disappear,” Froehlich said. “This is the last resort for many people.”

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Corey Rogers