Administrative & Legislative Affairs
1. We work tirelessly to help Holocaust survivors overcome complex and, at times, overwhelming administrative obstacles when dealing with government agencies, hospitals, and other entities, both domestically and internationally.
2. Today, Holocaust survivors continue to face challenges that demand action. They have endured terrible trauma and are still suffering from the consequences of the atrocities they experienced. Many Holocaust survivors suffer from various health issues linked to their experiences during the Holocaust, resulting in an increased need for healthcare services, including home care.
Legislation plays an instrumental role in addressing the needs of Holocaust survivors and ensuring that they are treated with dignity and respect. Through regular meetings and public hearings, legislators are kept informed and develop a better understanding of the immediate needs of Holocaust survivors. We work with legislators to make policies and regulations more responsive to these needs. For instance, while we have achieved success in securing exemptions for a number of people, we are currently working on a proposal for a waiver that would allow all Holocaust survivors in urgent need of home care to bypass the designated cutoff dates for enrollment in Managed Long Term Care plans and for transfer between the plans.
As a society, it is our moral obligation to ensure that Holocaust survivors are provided with the care and support they require.
Here are some examples of our advocacy in the administrative affairs area:
The Maya's Case
Upon losing her husband, Maya decided to join her children in another country. In order to reunite with her children in a different country, she had to undergo a background check not only from the United States but also from her country of birth. The FBI promptly responded to our request, but her country of birth government wasn't as responsive. We managed to expedite the background check by engaging the head of the United Nations mission from that particular country, who in turn personally notified the ambassador, greatly expediting the process.
The Svetlana's Case
Svetlana found herself in a situation where she needed to renew her expired foreign passport, but faced a challenge as the country she came from did not have a consulate in New York. In order to proceed with the passport renewal process, the embassy insisted on an in-person visit to their Washington DC office. Unfortunately, Svetlana's medical condition prevented her from undertaking this journey. Fortunately, with the assistance of members of Congress, we have been able to establish cooperation with foreign missions on various legal and administrative matters related to our efforts. In this particular case, the embassy responded to our request and dispatched a council accompanied by his assistant to meet Svetlana. Along with them, they brought the necessary equipment for passport issuance. Consequently, Svetlana's new passport was efficiently prepared and delivered to her without any delay.
The Isaac's Case
Isaac underwent a rehab treatment that lasted several months. However, upon his discharge from the rehab, the HRA failed to reinstate his food stamps benefits. Despite Isaac's very advanced age and the considerable efforts made by his community social workers, his benefits remained suspended even after waiting in line for hours during two exhausting visits to the HRA center. Fortunately, thanks to the swift response from the HRA commissioner's office, we were able to promptly reinstate Isaac's food stamps with retroactivity, preventing any unnecessary hardship.
The Doris's Case
Doris was having some issues with her Citizenship paperwork, resulting in an indefinite hold-up of her naturalization process. Furthermore, her inability to obtain U.S. citizenship prevented her from applying for SSI, leading to financial difficulties. Based on the strong arguments we presented to the DHS Secretary, the case was forwarded to the New York City district field office of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for an expeditious review. This led to Doris successfully becoming a U.S. citizen, ultimately paving the way for her applying for SSI benefits.
The Polina's Case
Polina found herself in a difficult situation when her beloved mother, who was a Holocaust survivor, passed away in a foreign country. It was critically important for her to attend the bereavement services, but there was an issue she could not overcome. To make it to the services, she had to leave on the same day but being a green card holder, she required a visa from the foreign consulate in New York to travel. The problem was that the consulate closes at 2 pm, and it was already past 3 pm. Fortunately, we stepped in and managed to convince the consulate to accommodate Polina. Remarkably, they agreed to extend their services after their regular working hours specially for Polina. Not only that, but they also processed her visa on the spot, allowing her to catch the flight on the very same day.
The real names were not used in the case descriptions above. This has been done to safeguard the privacy of those involved.