Action Alert! Remind your Senators why Health Care Matters to You while they’re Home on Recess
May 31, 2017
The US Senate is in recess through June 4, and Senators are now in their home states. This presents an opportunity for you to share your concerns about health care coverage for people with disabilities with your Senators in-person. Or, call them in their district offices. It’s a critical time to get Senators to commit to protecting health care and Medicaid. What they hear this recess will make the difference in how they will address health care proposals when they return to Washington next week.
The Senate is currently working on their version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the bill that was passed by the House of Representatives earlier this month that, in its current form, would be devastating to individuals with disabilities and their families.
Read AAPD’s Statement regarding House Passage of the American Health Care Act
Before the AHCA reaches President Trump’s desk, the Senate must pass their version of the bill and then reconcile it with the House of Representatives. NOW is the time to make sure your Senators understand the life-saving coverage that people with disabilities receive thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and the services and supports provided by Medicaid that enable people with disabilities to live, work, and participate in their communities. ALL currently threatened by the AHCA!
While the legislation is expected to change in the Senate, the current form of the AHCA:
- Decimates Medicaid with $834 billion in cuts over the next decade
- Results in 23 million people losing their health care by 2026
- Does not protect people with pre-existing conditions
- Increases the likelihood of more people with disabilities going into nursing homes and institutions
- Reduces or eliminates essential health benefits (including prescription drugs, mental health services, rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices, and more)
Participate in town halls or other events
You can find public events for Senators all across the country thanks to the Town Hall Project. Make sure that Medicaid and health care concerns for people with disabilities are raised during these events. Sharing personal health care stories can be particularly impactful.
Contact your Senators
Contacting Congress allows you to easily search for your Senators and access information on their home-state offices.
- Civic Engagement Toolbox For Self-Advocates – Autistic Self Advocacy Network
- How to Set up a Meeting with Your Member of Congress – Families USA
Tweet your Senators and use the hashtags, #ProtectOurCare, #SaveMedicaid, #KeepAmericaCovered, and/or #CoverageMatters
[insert your Senator’s Twitter handle] Over 10 million people with disabilities rely on #Medicaid for healthcare coverage. Please – #ProtectOurCare & #SaveMedicaid.
[insert your Senator’s Twitter handle] Don’t allow insurers to discriminate against people w/ disabilities because of pre-existing conditions. #ProtectOurCare
[insert your Senator’s Twitter handle] The #AHCA would leave people w/ disabilities & millions of others without healthcare. #ProtectOurCare & #KeepAmericaCovered
- A Self-Advocate’s Guide to Medicaid
The Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) recently released their third plain language advocacy resource: A Self-Advocate’s Guide to Medicaid. This guide has six parts: Medicaid introduction and background, Who Can Get Medicaid?, What Does Medicaid Pay For?, Medicaid funding, What Could Happen to Medicaid?, and a summary and glossary explaining the terms used in the toolkit.
- Join the Fight to Protect Medicaid
The Center for Public Representation developed this website to help people with disabilities, their families, and advocates/allies understand the impact of AHCA and give them the tools to advocate.
- Protect Our Care Initiative
Families USA hosts and action center on their website that provides updates on the status of the American Health Care Act as well as an Action Kit to help advocates contact their Members of Congress.