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 advocated for the health care rights of low-income persons with disabilities using impact litigation and policy advocacy to ensure continued access to Medicaid benefits and to protect their individual rights under federal Medicaid and disability rights laws.

In 2017, a number of states began seeking to implement work requirement rules in Medicaid, a policy that takes health coverage away from beneficiaries who cannot meet and/or report a minimum number of work hours every month. The rules effectively bar receipt of Medicaid benefits, result in coverage losses, and disproportionately impede access to critical health care services for persons with disabilities. Jen’s work first focused on protecting Medicaid access for this population, particularly for persons with hidden disabilities, because they are routinely unidentified and denied reasonable accommodations by social services agencies during the complicated public benefits application and renewal procedures.

Fellowship Highlights

During the two-year Fellowship period, Jen:

  • Worked with NCLEJ and 18 partner organizations to ensure persons with disabilities maintain access to critical health care benefits
  • Assisted in the development and litigation of 3 filed cases and 2 nascent suits, all of which aim to ensure persons with disabilities are afforded a meaningful opportunity to apply for and continue to receive public benefits, including Medicaid
  • Secured victories for Medicaid beneficiaries in New Hampshire and Florida who would have lost health coverage resulting from the state implementing work rules or failing to conduct eligibility redeterminations
  • Developed an ongoing lawsuit that alleges disability-based discrimination by the Suffolk County Department of Social Services for failing to provide reasonable accommodations to benefits applicants and recipients with disabilities, as required by federal disability rights laws

Next Steps

Jen is now a legal fellow at the Center for Reproductive Rights, where she works to advance reproductive rights and protect access to safe and affordable contraceptive health services, including abortion.

Meet Other Fellows Like Jen Samantha

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Anna McCrary

Host: Georgia Legal Services Program

Sponsor: King & Spalding LLP, McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP

Rosanna Roizin

Host: The Center for Family Representation

Sponsor: Pfizer Inc.

Gabriela Sevilla

Host: Homeless Persons Representation Project, Inc.

Sponsor: Pfizer Inc.

Current Fellow

Amber Harding

Host: Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless

Sponsor: Steptoe & Johnson LLP