On February 14, the National Council on Aging NCOA reported on spending cuts included in the release of the President’s FY2012 Budget saying that the “President’s Budget Undermines the Only Jobs Program for Vulnerable Seniors.”
NCOA says the cuts would drastically slash initiatives that empower older Americans to sustain their health and economic independence. The budget proposes a 45% cut in the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP), the only major jobs program targeted specifically to helping disadvantaged older adults who need to remain in the workforce to avoid financial crisis. SCSEP serves those with extremely low incomes, with eligibility limited to 125% of the federal poverty line (currently $13,613). This cut would result in the loss of over 55,000 part-time jobs, causing thousands of mature workers to struggle to remain employed.
Jim Firman, President and CEO of the National Council on Aging said in the article, “At a time when Democrats and Republicans are both talking about jobs, it just doesn’t make sense to cut the only jobs program for seniors. The unemployment rate just went down in December as 36,000 new jobs were created and now the Administration wants to give them right back.”
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