Following some heavy backlash, the administrators at the college have changed their minds.
Administrators at the University of Missouri have now decided that they will be offering student health insurance subsidies to graduate students who are working at the college, after all.
This is a direct reversal of the decision that had been made last week, in which they had decided to cut the funding.
This change of heart with regards to the student health insurance subsidies has arrived after some serious backlash occurred against the university. Graduate students threatened to walk off their jobs, and even Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Mo) added her own pressure to the mix. This was what happened following a decision that had previously been made by the officials at the university when they told graduate students who were working as teaching and research assistants that they could no longer afford to provide money that was specifically meant to assist with payments for health plan premiums.
The university officials said that the student health insurance subsidies were in violation of the ACA.
They explained that there were certain rules under the Affordable Care Act that penalized employers who provided their employees with additional funding in order to help them to buy their individual health plans. That said, following the backlash to their first decision, the University of Missouri has chosen to “defer” making the final decision until 2016.
That said, choosing to defer the decision until 2016 may feel like somewhat of a victory for the students, but it’s important to recognize that it is only a temporary one. Next year, they will need to go through the same decision making process, at which time they will potentially be at risk of losing the subsidies for their health insurance, once again.
The decision to continue the subsidies for one more year does remain quite important for many graduate students. For example, these graduate student health insurance subsidies affect international students quite heavily, as they are required to have coverage. Senator McCaskill released a statement that said “It’s clear from the confusion over the last few days that a long-term policy is needed to provide certainty to these students.”