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to the AFL-CIO from
Labor for Single Payer.
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Please Sign the Open Letter to the AFL-CIO
Please Sign the Open Letter to the AFL-CIO
August 14, 2013 By 2 Comments
These complaints have been exploited by anti-labor, right wing ideologues to undermine the very idea of healthcare reform. Some in labor will use these attacks to call for a circling of the wagons around Obamacare. We in the Labor Campaign for Single Payer maintain that such a response is self-defeating. Rather, we believe that this crisis is an important organizing opportunity to unify the labor movement around the continuing fight for healthcare justice.
Please consider signing it to add your voice to the growing grassroots labor movement for single-payer Medicare for All. Signatures must be submitted by Thursday, September 5.
Finish the Job! Make Healthcare a Human Right.
An Open Letter to the AFL-CIO from Concerned Trade Unionists.
Please sign on below.
Dear President Trumka,
On January 1, 2014 millions of Americans will become eligible for no-cost or subsidized healthcare under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). There is no doubt that this is an improvement over what we had. One only has to look at how difficult it was to pass the ACA and the continued obstructionism of its opponents to understand the powerful forces opposed to healthcare justice in any form.
Almost without exception, unions supported the ACA. Most did so because they saw it as a modest and achievable reform that could mitigate the combined effects of rising costs, decreasing quality and increasing numbers of uninsured and under-insured faced by working families everywhere. Many saw it as a first down payment on real reform that would make healthcare a right for everyone in America through expanded and improved Medicare for all. (Nonprofit-Single Payer Health Care)
When labor went all-out to support the ACA, we did not anticipate the devastating impact it would have on Multi Employer Taft Hartley Funds. We did not anticipate that our non-profit, worker friendly plans would be forced to pay a hefty “reinsurance fee” to subsidize the risk taking of private insurance corporations.
We did not anticipate the acceleration of race to the bottom pressures caused by the Cadillac Tax and the low standards of the tiered exchange plans. We did not anticipate the insidious creep of hard-won employer-provided coverage towards defined contribution plans. Nor did we anticipate that the Obama administration would ignore legitimate labor requests for relief and adjustment while bending over backwards to accommodate business and private insurance interests.
All of this is creating division in the house of labor. While many raise legitimate issues, some have begun to call for the repeal of Obama-care. These divisions have been exploited by the enemies of labor to advance their own anti-worker, anti-healthcare justice agenda.
We believe that this is not the time to turn our backs on health care reform and advancing the cause of health care justice. Rather, we must push the envelope further. America’s working families need a healthcare system, not a healthcare industry. They need healthcare that is affordable, guaranteed and accessible to all without regard to age, employment status, income or geography. They need a system like every other industrialized country in the world where healthcare is a birthright, not a commodity.
Only labor can lead this fight. The business community’s lockstep adherence to a failing ideology
Seldom in American history have such powerful economic and reactionary forces been so mightily aligned against such a moral and just cause. The viciousness and extremism of the enemies of healthcare justice defy description. Their intent is to convince the American people that all reform is impossible because the enemy is too powerful.
Labor did not win its place in American society by backing away from such challenges. Rather, labor’s greatest advances have been made in times of trouble when it has aligned its interests with those of the vast majority of Americans who work for a living.
We urge the AFL-CIO to take the lead to mobilize support for single payer healthcare among other stakeholders including religious, community and poor people’s organizations and among the sick, healthcare providers and the small business community. We hope that this September’s quadrennial convention takes up this historic task.
As a first step, the AFL-CIO should endorse national single-payer legislation such as HR 676
These are fights worth having. Our movement will grow if we let the American people know that we have a better idea for healthcare for all Americans: Nonprofit Single Payer health care. It is time to take the transnational insurance cartels off the table, and give everyday people a seat at the table.
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