Thank you! – Immediate Call to Action to help 8700 children in MA!

UPDATE 3/5/19: Good news! This bill was voted favorably out of committee!  This means it will be voted on by both the full house and senate. We will let you know when that vote is set and will ask you to contact your State Rep and Senator.  We will also take action to contact the Governor and tell him not to veto this measure again! Stay tuned.

Thanks to all of you who were able to act quickly, at the last minute, and sent in written testimony- we will be following this bill along with others, and will let you know if and what our next move will be.

Original post:

We’ve received late word that the first committee hearing for a bill we supported last year and was vetoed by Gov Baker, and has been refiled, will be Tuesday 3/4 – thus this is an Immediate Response Call to Action.

We are asking you to send a quick email to the committee chair and vice chair before the hearing.

If a poor mother who qualifies for welfare has two children, she can get up to $578 a month in government assistance. But if one of those children was born while she was on assistance, she can only get up to $478.  This, for many poor families, can mean a diaper or food shortage.  This cap impacts just 8700 children in MA, lifting the cap will not create a problem for our state budget.

MA is one of only 16 states that has a cap on kids.

Last year a bill to lift this cap passed both the MA House and Senate. It was vetoed by Gov. Baker who said he would sign it only if it included deductions in the same amount from disability payments. That would not resolve the issue, and would have impacted over 5000 of the 8700 kids.

What we are asking you to do:

Send an email with the subject line “Please submit this as written testimony for your hearing today on ‘Lift the Cap on Kids.’ ”

Send the email to the Joint Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities Chairs: (senate) and (house)

Do it before NOON Tuesday –

Tell the committee you want them to vote to remove the Cap on Kids -H. 104 and S. 37.

Add a narrative. Do you have a personal story about a struggling family?

Do you want your state to be one of only 16 that denies this small amount of money to poor families?

More information from this fact sheet:

What is the Cap on Kids?

  •  The Cap on Kids – also called the Family Cap – denies welfare benefits to children conceived while – or soon after – the family received benefits.
  •  Massachusetts denies benefits to 8,700 children because of the Cap on Kids.
    Welfare benefits go up by about $100 a month as family size increases, unless the child is excluded by the Cap on Kids.
  •  Welfare benefits are very low – $593/month for a family of three, but only $491 if one of the children is excluded by the Cap on Kids.
  • Massachusetts is one of only 16 states that still have a Cap on Kids or similar policy. Eight states that had kids cap policies have repealed them.

Didn’t we do this last year?

  •  The Legislature included Lift the Cap on Kids in the FY 19 budget. The Governor returned it with an amendment conditioning family cap repeal on cutting off benefits to children with a disabled parent. The Legislature rejected the amendment and reenacted family cap repeal, but the Governor vetoed repeal after the formal session ended.

Please support early action to Lift the Cap on Kids so children do not have to wait even longer for an end to this injustice.

Let us know you emailed testimony here in comments or send to

(If you see errors or omissions please contact

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