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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: July 2, 2019 04:24 PM
From: Representative Malcolm Kenyatta and Rep. Melissa L. Shusterman
To: All House members
Subject: Emergency Relief for Our Most Vulnerable Pennsylvanians
The General Assistance (GA) program was a financial lifeline for many of our state’s most vulnerable residents. The program provided $200 on average a month to those who were unable to work, those caring for loved ones who were sick or disabled, veterans, women fleeing domestic violence and adults receiving substance abuse treatment. This program provided assistance in paying for the basic necessities of life – things we often take for granted, such as toiletries, transportation, shelter, utilities or medication.

Unfortunately, the GA program was recently eliminated, severing an important lifeline that helps connect people with emergency assistance during some of the most trying times of their lives. The elimination of this program will undoubtedly affect the thousands of Pennsylvanians who are relying on a temporary hand up to achieve stability and self-sufficiency.

To address this injustice, we will be introducing a bill to provide emergency relief to those who previously received support through GA. As state legislators, we must do all that we can to help Pennsylvania’s most vulnerable and neediest residents instead of causing irreparable harm. It is our hope that you will join us in supporting this vital legislation. Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as HB1709