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April 17, 2013

ANDERSON: Sequestration: It isn’t just a national issue

The current news on sequestration is no news. As a community and a group of people we find the discussion cumbersome, boring and plain dull. Many of us don’t know who to blame for it so it’s easier not to deal with it. How does it affect us after all? This animal called a Sequester?  

Washington seems so far away for too many of us we believe its impact will be minimal. It won’t.  

According to a White House report “Impact of March 1st Cuts on Middle Class Families, Jobs and Economic Security: Indiana,” this is what Hoosiers can expect: 

• In Indiana alone schools will lose approximately $13.8 million dollars. That will put around 190 teachers and aides at risk of losing their jobs.

• Indiana will lose another $12.4 million in funds for education for children with disabilities.

• Work study jobs will experience cuts to the tune of 2,170 fewer jobs for low income students. 

• Head Start must cut 5 percent of its budget, which locally means the entire summer program must be cut to be able to maintain Head Start at current levels.  

• Indiana will lose $3.3 million in protections for clean air and clean water. 

• Military readiness will take a huge cut because approximately 11,000 civilian Department of Defense employees would be furloughed; reducing gross pay by around $64.4 million. 

• Law enforcement and public safety will lose $262,000.

• Job search assistance will lose $683,000 —  meaning 24,290 fewer people will receive assistance. 

• Vaccines for 2,770 fewer children will be available to protect from mumps, rubella, tetanus, whooping cough, influenza, measles and hepatitis B. 

• Public health will lose $619,000 in funds that would ordinarily help upgrade response to health threats including infectious diseases; natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological events.  

• Another $1.7 million in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse will be lost — resulting in 1,100 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs. 

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