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Friday, 25 March 2011 04:51

Universal Healthcare Bill Passes VT House: Vermont Takes Step Towards Making Healthcare a Human Right

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NEWS ALERT FROM THE HEALTHCARE IS A HUMAN RIGHT CAMPAIGN


Montpelier, VT -- Statehouse -- On Wednesday, March 23, members of the grassroots Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign cheered on as the Vermont House of Representatives voted 92 - 49 to pass the universal healthcare bill, H.202.  The House bill passed as a result of thousands of Vermonters speaking out and demanding that healthcare be treated as a human right and provided as a public good.  

"This bill puts Vermont on a path to a system in which every Vermonter can get the healthcare they need when they need it, and the financing of that system is shared equitably by all.  This is a huge step forward," says Peg Franzen, President of the Vermont Workers' Center.

The Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign still hopes to strengthen the bill in the Senate based on its human rights principles of universality, equity, accountability, transparency and participation.  

"This bill is a road map and it gets Vermont started down that road.   We are fighting hard to have human rights principles be the guidelines for this bill, because we must have a system that works for everyone," says Franzen. "We're asking the Senate to specify that Green Mountain Care will be financed equitably, which means that people and businesses should contribute based on their ability to pay. We're also demanding that the new system gets rid of the middlemen - private insurance companies - which are in the business of making money on our backs and denying us access to care."  

In 2008, the Vermont Workers' Center launched the Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign to change what is politically possible in healthcare reform.  The Campaign has done this by uniting Vermonters across the state who struggle to get the healthcare they need, and who believe healthcare is a public good.

For more information, go to www.workerscenter.org/healthcare