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Larson, DeLauro Condemn Harmful Trump Social Security Rule

February 25, 2020
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – (February 25, 2020) Today, House Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee Chairman John B. Larson (CT-01) and House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-03) condemned the final rule by the Social Security Administration (SSA), “Removing Inability to Communicate in English as an Education Category.”

“With this rule, the Trump Administration will deny people the Social Security disability benefits they’ve earned. For years, Social Security’s rules recognized that for an older worker applying for disability benefits with severe health conditions, and with no or little transferable job skills, the inability to communicate in English poses an additional barrier to work. The new rule will end SSA’s consideration of this obstacle. I condemn this action by the Trump Administration, which will deny Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability benefits to an estimated 10,000 people a year with severe disabilities,” said Larson.

“The Trump Administration’s rule to block Social Security and SSI disability benefits to older workers with severely limited abilities and who cannot communicate in English is disgraceful. The administration has provided no valid evidence that these workers will be able to make ends meet without this support from the federal government.  This is a lifeline for some of our community’s most vulnerable, and we should not turn a blind eye to their needs,” said DeLauro.

Last year, Larson joined House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal (D-MA), House Ways and Means Worker & Family Support Subcommittee Chairman Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Senate Finance Social Security Subcommittee Ranking Member Sherrod Brown (D-OH) in sending a letter to SSA urging them with withdraw the proposed rule. In addition, DeLauro’s enacted Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education funding bill for fiscal year 2020 included language discouraging the Trump administration from moving forward with this rule.