By Beth Fisher

DETROIT (WWJ) – The Detroit Chapter of the NAACP and the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization have taken court action against the termination of state welfare cash assistance benefits.

They filed a Friend of the Court brief in federal court asking for immediate oral arguments.

“We believe that [U.S. District Judge Paul Borman] should continue to keep this case within the jurisdiction of his court,” said NAACP Local President the Reverend Dr. Wendell  Anthony.  “Notification to individuals has not been properly achieved. The State of Michigan is playing games with the lives of families,” he said.

The Department of Human Services planned to cut cash welfare benefits for thousands of Michigan on October 1st  because they exceeded a 48-month retroactive time limit signed into law by Governor Rick Snyder last month.

Judge Borman ruled earlier this month that the cash assistance was to continue until notices sent to families were corrected. DHS clients were then to be given 10 days to file an appeal before their benefits were cut off.

“We are pleased to have the City of Detroit, led by the honorable Mayor Dave Bing to join with us in filing this brief … further to prevent the state from once again attempting to eliminate families who are totally dependent upon state aid for their survival,” Anthony said.

Anthony said the action is hurting people like Carolyn Bradford, a mother of two.

“This was my son’s first year of school, and I’m having a hard time getting him clothes and getting everything situated. So, me and my family are homeless,” Bradford said.

“Please, look out for the mothers and most of all the children. I have always paid my rent and my utilities. Now I have to look at my children and tell them I don’t know what to do,” she said.

Anthony said the NAACP believes the new state law is unconstitutional.


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