New Jersey residents applaud the Red Bank Borough Council for approving a resolution calling for our federal congressional delegation to support passage of the Medicare for All Act of 2019 and the Healthcare Emergency Act of 2020.
The resolution is one of 39 approved by local governments nationwide but the first passed in New Jersey.
The effort is being organized by numerous nationwide organizations including Public Citizen, Our Revolution, The Center for Popular Democracy and Healthcare-NOW. The local effort has been led by activists of Monmouth County affiliate of the national progressive group Our Revolution.
“As members of Our Revolution Monmouth and residents of Red Bank, we are very pleased that the Red Bank Council will join other towns and cities throughout the United States approving a Medicare For All resolution that will encourage our legislators to appreciate the great need for affordable, comprehensive healthcare for everyone,” said Charlie and Judi Pack.
The resolution was introduced by Councilmember Kate Triggiano.
The unanimous vote to pass the resolution “is testament to how far we have come in the fight to win Medicare for All,” said Triggiano. “This resolution is a statement of the vision we have for a better future and a promise to continuously work towards shaping that future for the benefit of all. I am confident we will see it through.”
Local activist Karla Ortega was one of eleven Red Bank residents who provided personal testimony urging the council to pass the resolution.
“Healthcare for all is essential and would cover the undocumented community living in Red Bank,” said Ortega. “Right now they are not eligible for health coverage due to their immigration status and Medicare for All would help our town be safer by enabling everyone to prevent, detect and treat illnesses.”
The resolution calls for passage of the Medicare for All Act of 2019, which would guarantee comprehensive health care for all Americans and would eliminate co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs that are keeping needed treatment out of reach for residents of Red Bank.
It also expresses support for the Healthcare Emergency Care Act of 2020, which would guarantee all residents full coverage for medically necessary health care without any out-of-pocket costs from now until a COVID-19 vaccine is widely available to the public.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, 700,000 NJ residents, and 30 million nationally, lacked health insurance.
Job losses due to the pandemic could raise the number of uninsured by 150%. In New Jersey, 72% of the uninsured are minorities. Additionally, high out-of-pocket expenses often make insurance unusable for insured residents. Between the uninsured and underinsured, too many community members are left behind by our current system and local governments often deal most directly with the consequences of our unaffordable and inequitable healthcare.
By calling for Congress to pass Medicare for All, Red Bank is part of a growing movement among city and town councils across the United States championed by at medicare4allresolutions.org and other organizations.
Information about the growing demand for Congress to pass Medicare-for-All can be found online at medicare4all.org.
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