This commentary is by Ellen Schwartz of Brattleboro, campaign coordinator for the Vermont Workers’ Center.
Over 1 million people nationally have been kicked off Medicaid since April, following Congress’ decision to end pandemic protections for Medicaid recipients.
When Covid hit, it became apparent that the huge gaps in our health care system would leave millions of people in the U.S. without access to care. The government mustered the resources to keep people on Medicaid — and also to provide emergency shelter, rent assistance, and increased SNAP benefits. It rightly saw Covid as a crisis, but chose to ignore the ongoing crisis of poverty and the austerity measures that ensure that some people will be uninsured, underinsured, homeless or hungry.