Jen Samantha Rasay

  • Hosted by National Center for Law and Economic Justice
  • Sponsored by Faber Daeufer & Itrato PC
  • Service location New York, New York
  • Law school Northeastern University School of Law
  • Issue area Disability Rights
  • Fellowship class year 2018
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Jen advocates for access to Medicaid on behalf of beneficiaries with hidden disabilities by challenging proposed Medicaid work requirement rules through policy advocacy, impact litigation, and support for community-based organizations.

An increasing number of states are seeking to implement Medicaid work requirements which take health coverage away from beneficiaries who cannot meet and/or report a minimum number of work-related hours every month. The rules effectively bar receipt of Medicaid benefits, result in coverage losses, and impede access to critical health care services. Jen’s work focuses on protecting Medicaid access for persons with hidden disabilities such as mental and behavioral conditions and substance use disorders, a population that already goes unidentified by benefits agencies and do not receive reasonable accommodation in the complicated benefits process.

Fellowship Highlights

In the past year, Jen has:

  • Worked with NCLEJ and partner organizations to file a lawsuit in federal court to challenge the federal government’s approval of a Medicaid work requirement waiver in New Hampshire where the Court ultimately sided with the Plaintiffs, granting summary judgment in July;
  • Worked with NCLEJ and partner organizations to file a lawsuit in federal court to challenge the discriminatory policies and procedures of the Suffolk County Department of Social Services in failing to provide accommodations to benefits applicants and recipients with disabilities, barring access to benefits like Medicaid and SNAP; and
  • Drafted and submitted 7 comment letters urging the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to reject Medicaid work requirement waivers proposed by several states as part of ongoing policy advocacy efforts.

Next Steps

In the next year, Jen plans to:

  • Continue developing legal claims and strategies to address unlawful practices by states in implementing Medicaid work requirements and other similar policies that bar access to Medicaid benefits.

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Current Fellow