Single mothers plead for lawmakers to reconsider proposed cuts

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Some of the stress from an early childbirth was alleviated for Sally Grossman, on account she was fully covered under Connecticut’s HUSKY A healthcare program. Self-employed, her other options for medical care were slim.

“I was 100 percent covered for all maternity care needed,” Grossman said, who lives in Windsor. “I was able to make decisions based on what was best for me and my unborn child. Not based on what care was least expensive or what or what would put me in the least amount of debt.”

She’s one of several low-income, single mothers who came to the Capitol Tuesday, to plead for lawmakers to show mercy during the state’s ongoing budget negotiations. They said under the current proposed budget, that 9,500 low-income parents would lose their health coverage.

“(If) they can look at the faces of thousands of kids who have been helped because their parents had prenatal coverage and you can say ‘I’m willing to gamble with your life because your parents are poor,’ then you probably don’t belong here,” Grossman said, fighting back tears.

For the first time in nearly two weeks both Democratic and Republican leaders made their way into Governor Malloy’s office to meet and discuss the budget. When they emerged, they largely avoided directly addressing the proposed HUSKY cuts.

“Not commenting on any single part but everything we do is going to be painful in one way or another,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney (D-New Haven).

Governor Malloy also sidestepped the cuts, noting that negotiations continue.

“Ultimately we have to produce a budget,” Malloy said. “Which means you have to garner sufficient votes in both houses and have to get my signature. We’re not there yet, so nobody knows what’s going to happen yet.”

The last day of the legislative session is next Wednesday, but it’s a foregone conclusion that they will need a special session for lawmakers to come to an agreement and finally pass a balanced budget.

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