Samarali Daniels

Town: Augusta

Occupation: Stay-at-home mom

Age: 21

Story: Damiels, her husband, and their two children, both under 5, get their health insurance through MaineCare, the state’s Medicaid program. Formerly homeless, the family now lives in Augusta, where her husband works at Sam’s Club and she stays home to care for their two children. She fears they may lose their health insurance because of the proposed cuts. Also, both of her children have benefited from Head Start, which is slated to lose all state funding. “Head Start advocated for us to get our son in speech therapy,” she said. “They helped link us up with so many resources. They’ve helped us in so many ways.”

Steve Huston

Town: Portland

Occupation: Disabled, volunteer advocate for Homeless Voices for Justice

Age: 52

STORY: Huston opposes proposed cuts to the boarding homes and residential facilities known as private non-medical institutions, which help people with substance abuse and mental health issues. As someone who has used the services to battle alcoholism, he said he wants lawmakers to know that it will be more expensive if people have to seek help from emergency rooms. “Without these services, many people will not recover from alcoholism or drug addiction,” he said. “Without these programs, people are going to be on the streets. More people are going to die.”


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