Chicago Stagehands Local 2 Endorses HR 676,
National Single Payer Legislation
Thomas Cleary, Secretary-Treasurer of Stagehands Local 2 in Chicago, reports that his local has wholeheartedly endorsed HR 676, Congressman John Conyers' national single payer health care legislation, Expanded and Improved Medicare for All.
"I would rather see my members' contributions go to their personal wellness than to another nameless insurance company's administrative costs," Cleary said.
"The Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010, made it possible for some of the uninsured to find coverage, but did not resolve the problem that health insurance companies are providing inadequate coverage and pricing care beyond our means," states the Local 2 resolution.
The resolution notes the difficulties that all unions are having in negotiations over health care and asserts that the Excise Tax of 2018, the so-called "Cadillac Tax", will make things worse.
"HR 676 would save billions of dollars annually by eliminating the administrative burdens, overhead, and profits of the private health insurance industry and apply those savings to improved and expanded coverage for all," the resolution concludes.
Hale Landes, a member of IBEW Local 134 and labor outreach chair of the Illinois Single Payer Coalition, and Bill Bianchi of Illinois Progressive Democrats of America organized to bring the single payer resolution to Local 2 leaders.
Local 2 is affiliated with International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts (IATSE), a union that has played a major role in galvanizing support for single payer in locals around the country.
IATSE Local 2 is the 620th labor organization to endorse HR 676. The local also passed a resolution supporting the Illinois legislation, HB 108, introduced by State Representative Mary Flowers.
HR 676 would institute a single payer health care system by expanding a greatly improved Medicare to everyone residing in the U. S. Patients will choose their own physicians and hospitals.
HR 676 would cover every person for all necessary medical care including prescription drugs, hospital, surgical, outpatient services, primary and preventive care, emergency services, dental (including oral surgery, periodontics, endodontics), mental health, home health, physical therapy, rehabilitation (including for substance abuse), vision care and correction, hearing services including hearing aids, chiropractic, durable medical equipment, palliative care, podiatric care, and long term care.
HR 676 ends deductibles and co-payments. HR 676 would save hundreds of billions annually by eliminating the high overhead and profits of the private health insurance industry and HMOs.
In the current Congress, HR 676 has 49 co-sponsors in addition to Congressman Conyers.
HR 676 has been endorsed by 620 union organizations including 151 Central Labor Councils/Area Labor Federations and 44 state AFL-CIO's (KY, PA, CT, OH, DE, ND, WA, SC, WY, VT, FL, WI, WV, SD, NC, MO, MN, ME, AR, MD-DC, TX, IA, AZ, TN, OR, GA, OK, KS, CO, IN, AL, CA, AK, MI, MT, NE, NJ, NY, NV, MA, RI, NH, ID & NM).
For further information, a list of union endorsers, or a sample endorsement resolution, contact:
All Unions Committee for Single Payer Health Care--HR 676
c/o Nurses Professional Organization (NPO)
1169 Eastern Parkway, Suite 2218
Louisville, KY 40217
(502) 636 1551