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FYI: A federal court ordered the city last week to inform thousands of New Yorkers denied public assistance that they have the right to contest that denial. Everyone who got generic denials of cash assistance, food aid and Medicaid applications since January 2002 will get the notice. In May 2001, the city settled a class action suit, brought by the New York Legal Assistance Group, that challenged Mayor Giuliani’s Eligibility Verification Review process, which was supposed to limit fraud but advocates said merely kicked eligible people out of welfare programs. The settlement required the city to give everyone denied assistance specific reasons for it, but a survey conducted by the city between July 2001 and May 2002 found only 11 percent of denials got such specific notices. [10/29/03]

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