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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Medicaid Townhall Fights Gov. Martinez's Tax on Working People

A packed room of Medicaid recipients and advocates, fighting Governor Martinez's proposed tax on Medicaid recipients showed up last Wednesday night to speak out over her plans.


The video above was provided by OLE NM. Thanks OLE for sharing this well attended event. The young man shown in the video still above is my favorite part of the whole video.

And this press release below was provided by NM Alliance of Retired Americans

On Wednesday, November 9, concerned retirees and seniors in Albuquerque joined forces with other vulnerable communities at a Medicaid Community Meeting at 6 pm at the UNM Continuing Education Building to tell Gov. Martinez not to cut Medicaid benefits, nor raise co-payments or premiums, as she plans it’s re-design in the face of threats from Washington's Supercommittee to consider cuts to Medicaid, Medicare & Social Security this Fall.

Federal and statewide pressure to balance existing budget shortfalls have led some to conclude that our state’s seniors can afford to live with less access to medical care and economic security in order to preserve corporate loopholes and tax breaks that have created the growing income inequalities that are now threatening the fabric of our society.

In August, President Obama signed a Budget Control Act that established the Super Committee, a bipartisan Congressional committee charged with identifying $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction that could include Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security cuts. The Super Committee, made up of 6 Democrats & 6 Republicans, will report to Congress by late November. If a majority of the committee members reach agreement on a $1.5 trillion deficit-reduction plan, it will get an up-or-down majority vote by late December. There can be no Senate filibusters.

Some members of the Super Committee have narrowly targeted cuts to Medicaid, Medicare & Social Security, with scarce attention to the consequences this would have on seniors of today and tomorrow.  Cuts to Medicaid could reduce access to care for 35,000 New Mexican seniors in nursing homes and 60,000 New Mexicans who live with a disability.  Cuts to Medicare could jeopardize preventive & specialty medical care that serves nearly 300,000 New Mexican elders. Without their monthly Social Security check, over 100,000 New Mexican seniors would fall below the poverty line.

Bernice Romero, a retired phone company worker from Albuquerque, reminds us how far our promises to seniors have fallen in these hard times.  “Labor union retirees who have worked very hard jobs for deferred security in their old age are now counting on Medicaid to get basic access to the doctor, thanks to recent insurance premium hikes of up to 1000% in New Mexico.  How will our people live if we raise Medicaid co-payments or cut their benefits?”

November 13, 2011 at 03:44 PM in Healthcare, Minority Issues, Senior Citizens | Permalink