New York (Mar. 2)
– The Federation of Jewish Philanthropies (FJP) of New York is organizing a meeting of the 16 largest federations in Washington next week to plan action to prevent cuts in the 1982 budget proposed by President Reagan. David Liederman, the FJP’s director of government relations, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that also being invited are about nine other federations from cities represented by key Congressmen.
Liederman said that at a meeting of the FJP today it was decided to center on six major areas: Title 20 Programs; child welfare, food and nutrition; employment programs, Medicaid, and housing and neighborhood programs.
The meeting today was called after the Reagan Administration announced plans to cut $41.4 billion from 83 federal programs in 1982 and make even deeper slashes in the following years. Since then the Administration has proposed even more cuts.
Liederman said the feeling was that the Jewish community could be organized to oppose the cuts once they realize that the cuts affected many in the Jewish community — the elderly, children and the working poor.
Explaining the six categories, in which the FJP wants to take a stand, Liederman said that Title 20 involves the day care centers senior center and home care for seniors. He said the Reagan Administration wants to make cuts in child welfare while the FJP would like to see the new child welfare program that went into effect only last year have a “chance” to work.
He said food and nutrition involves food stamps, lunch programs, and the summer food programs for youngsters. Employment is basically the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) which has enabled many Jewish organizations to staff various programs. Liederman noted that if CETA was phased out as the Administration wants, many of those now employed through it, would be back on welfare or receiving unemployment benefits so that there would be no savings to the government.
The fifth category, health, also involves many of the FJP’s mental health programs, Liederman pointed out. He said efforts will be made to prevent cuts in housing and neighborhood preservation programs.