Nurse Marilyn Ralat Albernas is Voting for the Freedom to Live with a Pre-Existing ConditionOctober 30, 2018
World traveler, activist, union leader and cancer survivor. These are just a few words to describe Marilyn Ralat Albernas. The 63-year-old registered nurse from Miami, who previously worked in the airline industry for many years, has traveled far and wide. Ralat Albernas has seen a lot over the years. But she says she’s never seen this level of political discourse and divisiveness in this country before. That’s why she’s speaking out and encouraging people to vote.
“The current administration has waged an all-out attack on our livelihoods, health care and democracy,” said Ralat Albernas. “Our freedoms are at risk. Our best defense is to vote for candidates like gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum and U.S. Senator Bill Nelson because they will protect our freedoms, so we can live with dignity and take care of our families.”
Polls show that health care is a key issue in this election. Voters know their health care is at risk. After years of unsuccessful attempts by Gillum’s opponent, Congressman Ron DeSantis, and the Republican-controlled Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), now there’s pending litigation aimed at dismantling the health care law and ending protections for people with pre-existing conditions. For Ralat Albernas, this issue hits close to home for both personal and professional reasons.
“Like millions of Americans, I have a pre-existing condition,” said Ralat Albernas. “Fortunately, I was able to beat cancer because it was detected and treated early. But my outcome could have been much different if I didn’t have health insurance.”
Ralat Albernas has made it her personal mission to try to save the ACA, the federal health care law. Several years ago, she joined an amicus brief and testified before federal lawmakers about how critically important Obamacare is and why it must be protected. Recently she spoke at a press conference in Miami with elected officials and labor leaders to urge lawmakers to protect the ACA.
“As a nurse, I see the toll it takes on patients who lack health insurance,” said Ralat Albernas. “Health problems are exacerbated if they go untreated. Costs are also significantly higher when the uninsured must rely on the hospital emergency room to get care. Protecting and expanding access to quality, affordable healthcare will benefit patients, families and hospitals.”
You can make your voice heard on this issue and other freedoms working families value by voting in the November 6 election. Let’s support Andrew Gillum for Governor, Chris King for Lieutenant Governor, Bill Nelson for U.S. Senate and our other endorsed candidates who will fight hard to protect our freedom to access affordable health care, earn good wages, come together as a union and secure affordable housing. Early voting is underway. You can find our list of endorsed candidates as well as information about early voting locations and hours on our website at 1199seiu.org/FloridaElection.
Let’s vote like health to protect our freedom.