The Black Family
The Affordable Care Act’s Effect on Minority Families in New Jersey
The struggle of the African American family has …….In the 1960s, as Assistant
Secretary of Labor for policy, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a member of the Kennedy administration, dedicated himself to formulating national policies that would eventually become the War on Poverty. In 1965, he released his research paper The Negro Family: The Case for
National Action AKA The Moynihan Report in which he focused on the deep issues that innately stemmed from the lack of a nuclear family in the Black community. He says, “At the heart of the deterioration of the fabric of Negro society is the deterioration of the Negro family. It is the
fundamental source of the weakness of the Negro community at the present time.” The struggles that the African American family faced then continue to be the same problems that they face now. However, there are social policies that have developed since the 1960s that were designed to raise the capacities of the minority family. The Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, is an concrete example of this. The purpose of this policy, according to the U.S Department of Health
and Human Services is to put “consumers back in charge of their health care” . However, while consumers in general might have more control over their health care, African American and
Latino consumers continue to be the overwhelming majority affected communities in many of the health disparities in the United States. According to a report by The Commonwealth Fund,
MOYNIHAN, D., Kass, A. A., & Kass, L. R. (2013). The Negro Family: The Case for National Action. AEI Paper & Studies,
Under the new law, health care plans can no longer deny children under the age of 19 because of preexisting conditions, young adults are covered until the age of 26 under their parents existing health care, etc.
“NonHispanic blacks are the most likely of all races examined to report they are in fair or poor health, with nearly 20 percent of nonHispanic blacks reporting this compared with 11 percent of
nonHispanic whites.” The statistics supporting this overwhelmingly favor the fact that more and more brownskinned people continually suffer from health issues that do not affect their white counterparts as often. The Affordable Care Act, much like the other social policies that have been developed since the 1960s, has done very minimal to change the overwhelming issue that is minority health. While it has made healthcare more affordable for the family that struggled to afford coverage in the past, unfortunately, at least for the time being, the Affordable
Care Act has done nothing but create a roster of insured and uninsured individuals. It has not solved the issue of minority health disparities in this country nor will it…not presently.
Now, that is not to place the blame solely on the federal government. They have served their purpose in the overwhelming fight against health disparities in the minority community. In this system, the federal government is essentially the bookkeeper or the accountant. Not only have they provided each and every state a budget with which to attack the health problems found in their state populations, but they’ve also recorded that number since the inception of the
Affordable Care Act policy in 2010. For example, New Jersey was one of the biggest reaper states of funds in 2010. However, in 2011, the same state of became one of the least funded
under the same policy. While you may wonder why, the answer to that question is simple.
Because the Affordable Care Act is a federal policy, it is the responsibility of the state
Racial and Ethnic Disparities in U.S. Health Care: A Chartbook http://www.commonwealthfund.org/usr_doc/mead_racialethnicdisparities_chartbook_1111.pdf 4