Take Action Against Cuts to Seniors

March 2015

Tens of thousands of older adults will lose access to life-sustaining drugs and health benefits and we need you to take action now to help defeat these cuts.

The Governor proposes reducing funding for the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) and the Drugs for the Elderly (DEL) program, eliminating all benefits for 14,000 people currently receiving them  and significantly reducing the benefit for 21,000 more.  Nearly 2,000 will lose all benefits under the DEL program.

Cutting MSP and DEL will be disastrous for thousands of Maine seniors and our economy.

More than a quarter of Maine seniors live on only Social Security, with an average income of under $14,000.  Yet, any older adult who receives MSP or DEL who earns more than $12,700 will lose money out of their pockets due to these cuts, and anyone earning more than $16,800 will lose all benefits entirely.  Older adults who lose these benefits will now have to pay between $2,400 and $5,000 out of pocket for needed health care and medications. 

Low income older adults are already struggling to pay for food, oil, housing and property taxes.  Far too many already live too close to the bone and simply cannot afford these cuts.  They will stop taking life-saving medications and experience serious health problems, shifting costs to local communities, health care providers and our long-term care system.  These cuts will also take money millions of dollars out of our economy.

There are MANY ways for you to help us defeat these cuts.

  • Tell us your story.  Tell us how you will be impacted by these cuts.
  • If you oppose these cuts, call YOUR legislator AND call at least ONE MEMBER of the Appropriations Committee and ONE MEMBER of the Health & Human Services Committee (typically, democrats oppose these cuts and republicans support them) and ask them to vote against these cuts.
  • Sign AARP’s Petition in Opposition to the Cuts which automatically sends an email to the Governor and your legislators (do this in ADDITION to making calls!)
  • Let your friends and family members know about these cuts and get them to do the same.
  • Send a letter to the editor of your local paper - tell the Governor that we’ve had enough cuts on the backs of Maine seniors and that it’s time to invest in building the kind of state we need that helps older adults thrive at home! 
These cuts are taking Maine in the wrong direction.  This year, we need to make big investments in transportation, housing and community-based care to help older adults age in place.  We can’t afford cuts that hurt the health of seniors at a time when the rest of our infrastructure is failing.  Please take action now!