Talk of the Town: SCOTUS, Health Care and Homelessness

Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued its decision on the Affordable Care Act. Across the country and around the Internet, advocates weighed in on the decision.

The court ruled the law constitutional and upheld the individual mandate. In addition, the court decided that states can choose whether or not to participate in the Medicaid expansion, without penalty. The Affordable Care Act gave the federal government power to withhold all Medicaid funding from states that chose not to participate in expansion.

While many advocates reacted positively to the decision over all, some mixed opinions were expressed among housing and homelessness advocates regarding the Medicaid decision. The Medicaid expansion includes coverage for adults without children, which would allow many homeless people who were previously ineligible for the program to access affordable healthcare.

With the court ruling that states are not required to participate in the expanded portions of Medicaid, some advocates have expressed concern about the impact of the decision on homeless people. Others have cast the decision as an opportunity to advocate at the local level to ensure Medicaid expansion is accepted by all states, and that homeless people who need coverage can access it. And it’s been noted that the law itself can help prevent homelessness, by keeping people from going bankrupt and losing their housing due to illness.

What do you think about the Affordable Care Act, and the Supreme Court’s ruling? Let’s talk about it in the comments!

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