MoCo Council adds biggest county to those backing Medicare for All

prog_hc_m4a_logo.PNGProgressive Maryland and The Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition Celebrate the Montgomery County Medicare For All Resolution as the Montgomery County Council passes a resolution calling on Congress to enact Medicare For All. Organizations and individuals including small business owners have backed this effort. Read more below.


Progressive Maryland and The Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition Celebrate the Montgomery County Medicare For All Resolution as the Montgomery County Council passes a resolution calling on Congress to enact Medicare For All.

 

The Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition (MDPHC) and its founding partner organization, Progressive Maryland (PM), are organizing to win a Medicare For All
healthcare system in the U.S. The organizations wish to extend their appreciation to the Montgomery County Council for taking action today in support of Medicare For All.

 

Lawmakers across the state are recognizing that public support is growing for a system that will provide healthcare for every resident of this state and country no matter their age, medical history, income,
employment status or location. The vote today also takes place in the context of the pandemic which has revealed all the shortcomings and disparities in our current patchwork system and the need for
comprehensive universal care, free at the point of service.


David Glenn, an oncology nurse who lives in Silver Spring and volunteers as a leader with both groups, said, “This critical campaign is about protecting and saving lives. We would have fared much
better during the pandemic if we had had a Medicare For All system. The private insurance based system kicked millions of people off their health care plans, charged exorbitant COBRA costs and
asked taxpayers to fund the scheme, all while making record breaking profits during this terrible crisis.”

 

Many local government officials, grappling with rising health care costs in their budgets and with the crushing healthcare needs of their uninsured and underinsured constituents are realizing everything
that Medicare For All has to offer for meeting people’s needs and reducing the strain on local budgets. More than seventy local governments have now passed resolutions urging Congress topass Medicare For All. Montgomery County becomes one of the largest jurisdictions in the country to do so.

 

The Montgomery County working group of MDPHC and PM activists drafted a resolution and worked with Council Vice President Gabe Albornoz and his staff to gain support for the measure across the
Council. Today, the Council passed the Resolution which urges those in Maryland’s Congressional Delegation who have not yet done so, to co-sponsor Federal Bill H.R. 1976, the Medicare For All
Act of 2021, which has already been co-sponsored by 118 Democratic House members.

 

Currently, four of Maryland’s U.S. House Members -- Kweisi Mfume, Anthony Brown, John Sarbanes, and Jamie Raskin -- are co-sponsors. Some areas of Montgomery County are represented by Raskin
and Sarbanes. Rep. David Trone also has constituents in the County and the advocates hope he will note the significance of this historic vote. Recently, both Maryland Senators and six Maryland
Congressional House members signed a letter asking President Biden to include Medicare expansion proposals in Federal legislation.

 

“We know that the pandemic has had a devastating and disproportionate impact on the health and financial well being of Black, Latinx, Indigenous, and other Marylanders of color and on so many of
our state’s essential workers" said Larry Stafford, Jr., Executive Director of Progressive Maryland. "It shows the need to organize for fundamental changes to our healthcare and economic systems. Medicare For All lines up with our values, advancing the principle that healthcare is a human right"

"And it will center racial justice in our healthcare system," Stafford continued, "guaranteeing access to health care to everyone while providing a framework that can help end disparities,”

 

The Montgomery County resolution was also supported by a wide range of groups who have deep roots in the community and represent thousands of residents: groups like CASA, ATU Local 689,
National Nurses United, 1199/SEIU United Healthcare Workers East MD/DC, the Maryland Poor People’s Campaign Montgomery Region, Our Revolution, DSA, the Muslim Voices Coalition, the
Rockville Human Services Advisory Commission, and small business owners like Aaron Seyedian who runs a living wage company called Well-Paid Maids.

 

Dr. Laura Kaplan-Weisman, of Olney, is a family physician and an early proponent of the resolution. She said: "It's great to see this come to pass after starting the push for it in 2019. I am grateful to the community activists, organizations, and businesses who worked together to form a grassroots coalition to show how badly we need Medicare For All now to reform our broken health insurance system. I know from experience in primary care that my patients as well as all residents of Montgomery County will benefit from high quality healthcare, regardless of employment status or demographics."

 

Kristy Fogle, PA-C, a healthcare provider and Founder of the Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition, applauds this victory for everyone who has been working to win healthcare for all. “This
action by the Council sends an urgent message to Maryland’s congressional delegation that despite important gains made since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare For All is the
best vessel to achieve the high quality health care that their local constituents and all Americans deserve.”

 

More on the Resolution:
Excerpts from the Montgomery County Council statement: Here in Montgomery County, it's estimated that nearly 74,000 adults are uninsured, and more than 118,000 residents are
underinsured including workers making low wages, part-time employees, contractors, and employees of many small businesses. The Montgomery County Council stands united in support of
the Medicare For All Act of 2021, H.B. 1976. We must build a national health care system that would end health disparities, effectively control costs, and assure everyone equal access.”

 

The full text of the resolution can be found here.


The Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition and Progressive Maryland along with allies from labor, community, civil rights, immigrant, faith, and social change organizations will continue to be
leaders in the fight for healthcare justice and Medicare For All across the state and country.



Progressive Maryland is a statewide nonprofit advocacy group that organizes for racial, social,
economic, health and environmental justice, with its base of 120,000 individual supporters and
members, regional chapters, and organizational affiliates around the state.


The Maryland Progressive Healthcare Coalition is a grassroots coalition of healthcare activists,
progressive organizational leaders, and healthcare providers who are focused on the legislative
fight for New and Improved Medicare For All. Over 30 state and national organizations have joined
this coalition to continue building power, education, and public awareness of Medicare For All.


For more information, contact:
Kristy Fogle, [email protected]
Patty Snee, [email protected]