New Jersey must enact solutions to bridge Medicaid coverage gap
New Jersey Citizen Action released the following statement today in response to an Urban Institute report that approximately 24,000 New Jersey workers could lose Medicaid eligibility due to the state’s minimum wage increase.
“Low-wage workers who see their minimum wage increase may have to purchase Affordable Care Act marketplace plans in order to stay insured,” said Maura Collinsgru, New Jersey Citizen Action Health Care Program Director.“These plans require premium contributions and co-pays, which full-time workers earning the new minimum wage can’t afford at $400 a week. New Jersey’s minimum wage increase is good for workers but should not force them to give up health care coverage.
“NJCA is calling on the State Legislature and Governor to enact a short-term policy solution that provides financial support to these individuals who will face higher costs when they turn to the ACA marketplace for health care coverage. The financial support should be sufficient to cover the entire additional cost of coverage. Without this support, low-wage workers will suffer a serious economic setback from increased out-of-pocket costs. One way to generate funding for this financial support would be a corporate responsibility fee, which would tax corporations that don’t provide benefits or a living wage to their workers. The short-term solution should bridge the coverage gap until New Jersey develops long-term solutions to expand affordability and coverage.”
New Jersey Citizen Action is a statewide grassroots organization that fights for social, racial and economic justice for all. We combine issue advocacy, organizing and policy work with the provision of free financial services across the state.