BOSTON (WWLP) – The migrant crisis continues as more individuals come to Massachusetts seeking shelter.
There are 7,210 migrant families now calling Massachusetts home, and in the latest move to seek federal funding, MassHealth is getting involved. Governor Healey has made it very clear that Massachusetts only has space for 7,500 families, which she expects the state to hit by the end of the month.
Healey has also made it clear that the Federal Government is not stepping up to assist with the roughly 24,000 individuals who have sought shelter under the state’s right-to-shelter law. In an attempt to get federal dollars, MassHealth has filed an amendment to its Medicare waiver, this would allow the program to fund housing for those who are already enrolled in state health coverage.
Governor Healey said, “We’ve said from the outset, that we are chasing every single federal dollar available to help us deal with what is a federal problem, and that is the number of new arrivals coming into Massachusetts. So, one of the things we did was to seek more money from the Federal Government through the Medicaid program, specifically, we are seeking 6 months of funding that will cover housing as well as other services for new arrivals.”
Many of the migrants’ legal status entitled them to Medicaid benefits including refugees, asylum seekers, Cubans, and Haitians as well as those granted parole into the U.S. for a year. If this is approved, members would also be able to receive other benefits like case management and referrals to education services.
Now, this amendment was filed last week and although this problem is time-sensitive, MassHealth expects to hear back on the matter in a few months.