Juneau, AK (August 19, 2016) –
Due to sudden Federal budgetary cuts nationwide recently announced by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska’s 477 Employability/General Assistance (EA/GA) program funding has been reduced by 20%. The reduction in funding will severely impact EA/GA client services for the remainder of the year.
Effective immediately, EA/GA will stop all support services and back-to-school clothing vouchers to clients, and freeze all Work experience contracts. The cuts will also affect EA/GA benefits provided to the Tribe’s Higher Education program and other Employment & Training programs.
“Unfortunately, because we received no prior notice, these cuts take place immediately and some services will be temporarily discontinued. Regrettably, the impact will be felt over a 4-month period instead of being spread over the course of a year. I extend my most sincere apologies to all tribal citizens affected by this reduction,” said President Richard Peterson.
The EA/GA program provides financial assistance to eligible Alaska Natives and American Indians for essential needs, which include food, clothing, shelter, and utilities. The program assists clients in becoming self-sufficient utilizing Individual Self-Sufficiency Plans that identify steps to increase independence and obtain employment.
“Central Council is working hard to find a solution to this budgetary shortfall. In the meantime, EA/GA staff will provide clients with alternative resources that may be available to assist in alleviating the effects of this reduction,” said 477 Director William Martin.