FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Massachusetts’ largest healthcare union denounces GOP bill that would have cost the state billions of dollars and jeopardize coverage for half a million residents
Boston, MA (March 24, 2017) – The following is a statement from Tyrék D. Lee Sr., Executive Vice President of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, in response to the withdrawal of the House’s proposed American Health Care Act (AHCA):
“The withdrawal of the House Republicans’ proposed healthcare legislation is a victory for millions of hardworking Americans who would likely see their healthcare coverage eliminated if this irresponsible and reckless bill moved forward.
The catastrophic consequences of this legislation have been well documented. In Massachusetts, it would have threatened coverage for up to half a million of our most vulnerable residents, cost the state billions of dollars and jeopardized the Commonwealth’s largest industry and one of its most important economic drivers. It would also have weakened insurance protections, ended Medicaid as we know it, threatened mental health and addiction recovery services and increased out-of-pocket expenses – all to provide a massive tax cut to the very wealthiest Americans.
The withdrawal of this bill is a recognition of its near universal opposition by healthcare providers, workers and advocates across America and an affirmation of the power of advocacy. It is crucial for voters to stand up and fight back against such gross inequity. Pulling the bill is a positive step – but we must remain vigilant to ensure that the Commonwealth can protect the major health and economic gains resulting from its pioneering efforts on universal healthcare, efforts which have given our state the lowest uninsured rate in the nation.”
Representing more than 56,000 healthcare workers throughout Massachusetts and over 400,000 workers across the East Coast, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. Our mission is to achieve affordable, high quality healthcare for all. 1199SEIU is part of the 2.1 million member Service Employees International Union.