Friday Facts and Figures is a brief digital newsletter focusing on data points from NJPP reports, research, and policy debates in New Jersey and beyond.
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There is only one day left to sign up for health insurance for 2019—the open enrollment deadline is Saturday, December 15. Those who do not have health insurance through a job, Medicare, or Medicaid must sign up or face a state penalty under legislation passed earlier this year. More than 80 percent of those who sign up via healthcare.gov (linked here) will receive subsidies. [Healthcare.gov]
New Jersey’s enrollment in the health care exchange is lagging fifteen percent behind where sign ups were at this point last year, according to new federal data. This decline can be attributed to the Trump administration’s sabotage of the Affordable Care Act, namely shrinking the enrollment period in half and cutting enrollment outreach funds by 90 percent. [Asbury Park Press / Lindy Washburn and Michael Diamond]
Almost 15,000 immigrant children are currently being held in government custody. Most of the children crossed the US-Mexico border as unaccompanied minors to escape poverty and gang violence in Central America. The youth shelters, nearing maximum capacity, have come under intense scrutiny from immigration advocates and child welfare experts. [NPR / John Burnett]
Dane Foster is a legal permanent resident of New Jersey and has lived in the United States for 27 years. He has a four children, owns his own business, and is married to a disabled Army veteran. Earlier this month he was picked up by ICE for deportation after dropping his baby off at daycare. His crime? Three misdemeanor marijuana convictions. He is currently being held at the Essex County jail, which has a nearly $3 million-a-month contract with ICE. [Gothamist / Matt Katz]
Paying a living wage not only benefits workers, but businesses too, according to Earth Friendly Products CEO Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks. Earth Friendly Products manufactures household cleaning products in Parsippany and has a company-wide minimum wage of $17 an hour. Governor Murphy toured the manufacturing plant earlier this week in support of a statewide $15 minimum wage for all workers. [Daily Record / William Westhoven]
It’s not too late to take a stand against exemptions in the minimum wage! Use this link to urge your legislators to leave no worker behind in the #FightFor15. [Click Here to Email Your Legislators]
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