McGovern Pushes Back on Proposed Cuts to SNAP; Upcoming Basic Rights Trainings on Utilities, HealthCare, Unemployment and MORE

We want to flag some important and relevant trainings going on tomorrow, next week and early March.

But first, check out the Washington Post article of 2/16/22 “Republicans Take Aim at Food Stamps in Growing Fight Over Federal Debt". Please amplify Congressman Jim McGovern’s tweet on the proposed cut to federal programs like SNAP: “I've had enough of Washington Republicans trying to cut programs that actually help people—like SNAP—so they can give more tax breaks to their rich friends. Here's a math lesson for @RepArrington  & others who want to take food away from hungry people.”  (Read the full thread - it is excellent, please amplify!)


FAQ for Older Adults on Maximizing SNAP - in English and Spanish

Again, tnx to our AmeriCorps, Katie Kelly, here’s a link to the English and Spanish versions of a flier advising older adults and persons with disabilities about the medical expense deduction to maximize their SNAP benefits as the extra SNAP allotments end. Check out both FAQs here


Utility Consumer Rights Free Webcast: Feb 22nd (Tues) 1:00 - 2:30 PM

Hosted by the National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), you will learn about the eligibility requirements in Massachusetts for utility discounts, how to prevent service from being shut off, and how to restore service if it has been terminated (among other useful advocacy strategies). The training will be held over zoom and last about 90 minutes including a short break and time for questions. This is free, but registration is required. Register HERE.


Whether you have never attended a training before and are completely new to utility advocacy, or are an experienced advocate looking for a refresher, all are welcome and encouraged to join us. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to


Health Care Access Programs - Feb 27th (Mon) 9:30 to 4 PM In-person and Live Webcast 

This training provides you with the basics of MassHealth and other subsidized health programs available to people under age 65 in MA. The AM includes an overview of the MassHealth eligibility, the process for applying and enrolling in coverage and an update on the "unwinding" from policies put in place during the COVID-19 public health emergency affecting MassHealth, the Health Connector and Health Safety Net programs. The PM includes overview of subsidized coverage from the Health Connector in its Connector Care program as well as practical troubleshooting tips for resolving common eligibility and access to service problems with MassHealth and the Health Connector. 


This training will give outreach workers, social workers, providers, and advocates an up-to-date nuts-and-bolts overview of eligibility issues, and how to assist their patients and clients in becoming enrolled and maintaining coverage. It is designed for both new advocates and experienced advocates looking for a review and update. Detailed online materials will be provided. Register HERE.


Unemployment Insurance Basic Rights Training - March 2nd (Thurs) 1 to 4:30 PM - Live Webcast

This training provides you with the expertise you need to understand the Unemployment Insurance (UI) system and to help your clients get the UI benefits to which they are legally entitled. The trainers will guide you through the entire UI system from eligibility criteria to the appeals process. 


Unemployed workers often cannot afford to retain professional services in pursuing their claims, so if you are a non-legal services attorney, you can register to assist someone in need of help, and in doing so, qualify for reduced tuition. Training materials include the Unemployment Advocacy Guide: An Advocate's Guide to Unemployment in Massachusetts.  Register HERE.


Income Maximization Training - March 7th (Tues) 9:15 to 3 PM - In-person and Live Webcast

This training is an overview focusing on various supplemental benefits and assistance programs which help working families and individuals to maximize their income and reduce their expenses. This training is designed as an overview of benefits, the subject areas are quite broad. This is not an in-depth analysis of any particular program. 


This training is for both new and experienced legal services advocates, lawyers in private practice, social and health services workers, and community activists who want to learn about or get an update on this subject in order to help their clients. Register HERE.


Feeding Our Neighbors Campaign FY24 Budget Campaign:  

We are on a roll!  Check out the Campaign’s FY24 Budget letter to Governor Healey and Lt Guv Driscoll asking for funding for state-funded SNAP and cash assistance benefits for immigrants iced out of federal SNAP and TANF.  Please help us get more co-sponsors!  Next Coalition meeting, Tuesday, March 7th at 11 AM.  And don’t forget to sign up as a supporting organization by going to our website HERE.