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Plaskett Blasts Supreme Court Decision to Continue U.S Territories Exclusion From Federal Benefits

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Congresswoman Plaskett

Congresswoman Plaskett (VI), a Member of the House Ways and Means Committee, released the following statement after the Supreme Court ruled to continue the unfair exclusion of residents of U.S. Territories from the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program:
“The Supreme Court’s decision to reverse the lower court and the appeals court ruling and side with the discriminatory practice of inequitable treatment of people living in the U.S. territories is reprehensible. Justice Sotomayor was the sole dissent. Not only did the Justices receive information that the people of the territory fight in all our wars and contribute, but they also received information that we pay significant taxes.
“I know all my constituents and other people in the territories are extremely disappointed by the decision. Once again, we are reminded of and kept to second class citizenship and treatment. I am particularly disappointed in the Biden Justice Department for appealing the decision of the federal appeals court that was clearly in favor of SSI being rightfully extended to our U.S. territories. Once again, we find ourselves with an administration that does not have the will to fight and overturn the Jim Crow segregationist, racist Insular cases rulings. What possible justification can there be to uphold a ruling that prevents elderly and disabled people from receiving vital support for basic necessities like food and shelter?
“My fellow Democrats and I on the Ways and Means Committee ensured that the House-passed Build Back Better Act would extend SSI to U.S. territories and we will continue to fight for that expansion to become law. I would like to thank Congressman Richard Neal for his ongoing support and advocacy on this front.”