I’m a frustrated Maine voter. Sen. Susan Collins recently claimed that the “expensive entitlement programs” the Biden administration is proposing in the Build Back Better legislation “would break the connection between work and a brighter future.”

Well, I can prove that’s not true. I am disabled, and earlier this summer I started a fellowship with a local nonprofit. I work no more than 10 hours per week, on a schedule that accommodates my multiple chronic illnesses. As soon as I started receiving my pay, I was kicked off MaineCare.

I don’t believe Sen. Collins understands the incredible fear an event like that causes a poor person. There’s no dignity to work when a disabled person gets a small job and immediately their safety net disappears.

Sen. Collins knows there is no brighter future without safety net programs for the poor; she’s simply not concerned about it. Sen. Collins is also so preoccupied with protecting corporations that she’s forgotten about her constituents who are struggling to survive. If these same corporations would pay their fair share in taxes, there would be no problem affording this once-in-a-generation investment.

The provisions in Build Back Better include affordable child care and expanded home- and community-based services for the elderly and disabled. These are measures that make it easier for people to work, and for families to thrive.

If Sen. Collins truly wants to allow workers some dignity, she should support this bill.

Gina Morin, Auburn

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