Action Alert! We’re not out of the woods yet on Healthcare
Please continue visiting, calling, tweeting, and emailing your Senators!
July 20, 2017
Thank you so much for all of your advocacy over the past few weeks to protest the American Health Care Act and Better Care Reconciliation Act – together we sent the message loud and clear that we will not sit idly by as our healthcare and services are stripped away. Your advocacy made a difference!
Unfortunately, the Senate is still not listening. The effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and harm Medicaid is back again with two new versions.
The Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act” (BCRA) and a new bill, the “Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act” (ORRA), are being readied for a vote next week. It is unclear which bill the Senate will move on at this point, but we expect a “motion to proceed” sometime next week — likely Tuesday or Wednesday. These bills are harmful to people with disabilities for many reasons.
- The ORRA cuts taxes on the rich by removing health care from the poor and middle class
- The ORRA would eliminate health care coverage for 32 million people by 2026; 17 million by next year (Congressional Budget Office)
- The ORRA would increase health care plan premiums by at least 100%
- The ORRA stops all Medicaid expansion at the end of 2019 (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)
- The BCRA guts Medicaid by cutting over $700 billion
- Both bills make it harder to provide home and community based services by eliminating the Community First Choice option for Medicaid
- Both bills eliminate the protections against discrimination for pre-existing conditions
- Both bills eliminate the requirement for essential health benefits (which include prescription drugs, mental health services, rehabilitative and habilitative services, and devices, and more)
Everyone needs to continue visiting, calling, tweeting, and emailing their Senators to tell them to vote no on the motion to proceed to consider these bills. All Senators must understand the damage this bill will do to the lives and liberty of people with disabilities and their families. We are grateful for all the advocacy you have already done – it has been effective. Please, keep it up!
Contact your Senators
The message is clear:
“Senator _____ must reject any bill that causes large coverage losses, ends the Medicaid expansion, caps and cuts the Medicaid program, or guts critical protections for people with health conditions.”
Focus on telling stories when you meet with, call, or contact your Senators. Write stories or record brief 60-90 second videos about you, your child, your parent, your relatives, or your friends who have a disability and need the support of Medicaid and health care. Include pictures. Share these stories on Facebook and Twitter and ask your friends and family to do the same. Our Senators need to see the human face of Medicaid.
The most effective outreach is to meet with your Senator (or their staff) in-person. When you do so, share your story of how access to health care and home and community-based services are important to you or your loved ones with disabilities. Those stories will particularly be impactful.
Contacting Congress allows you to easily search for your Senators and access information on their D.C. offices.
- Civic Engagement Toolbox for Self-Advocates – Autistic Self Advocacy Network
- How to Set up a Meeting with your Member of Congress – Families USA
- Medicaid Cuts Equal Disability Cuts Toolkit – TASH
- Call Script – Center for Public Representation
- Call Script – Families USA
- Email Template – Center for Public Representation
Engage your Senators through Social Media
Tweet your Senators and use the hashtags #SaveMedicaid, #NoCutsNoCaps, #ProtectOurCare, #ADAPTandRESIST, #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 #BCRA is a threat the life, liberty, and independence of people with disabilities. #ProtectOurCare #SaveMedicaid
[insert your Senator’s Twitter handle] Medicaid provides essential services to millions of people with disabilities. #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps
[insert your Senator’s Twitter handle] Repeal without a replacement is not an option! #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps #ProtectOurCare
States to Target:
- North Dakota
- West Virginia
Please be sure to thank Senators Capito (R-WV), Collins (R-ME), and Murkowski (R-AK) for their commitment to not vote for a repeal bill without a replacement.
Contact your Governors
While Senators have the most direct influence on the legislative future of the BCRA and ORRA, contacting Governors is another great way to put additional pressure on Senators. You can find contact information for governors here.
Social Media Graphics:
You are welcome to use any of the graphics below as part of your social media outreach. Thank you to SuMo Design Workshop for pulling these together!
- #ADAPTandRESIST Flyers – ADAPT
- Don’t Take Our Healthcare Graphics – MoveOn.org
- Preexisting Condition Graphics
Additional Resources and Analyses
- H.R. 1628, Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017 – Congressional Budget Office
- Repeal-Without-Replace Even More Harmful Than Failed Senate Bill – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
- Senate Health Bill Can’t Be Fixed – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
- Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and Individuals with Disabilities – Center for Epidemiological Research for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
- Contrary to Republican Claims, Revised Senate Health Bill Provides No Additional Funding for States – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
- Waivers Can’t Solve the Problems Created by Massive Federal Medicaid Cuts – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
- Wealthy, Corporations Still Win Big Under Revised Senate GOP Health Bill – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
- Major Threat: How the Better Care Reconciliation Act Jeopardizes Medicaid Home- and Community-Based Services – AARP
- Latest Version of Senate Health Care Bill Fundamentally the Same as Previous Versions – Families USA
Previous AAPD Healthcare Action Alerts
- Action Alert! Senate Delays Healthcare Vote – Keep Up the Pressure! (6/30/2017)
- Action Alert! Last Chance to Tell Your Senators to Save Healthcare (6/27/2017)
- Action Alert! The American Health Care Act is about to be Introduced in the Senate (6/20/2017)
- Action Alert! Remind your Senators why Health Care Matters to You while they’re Home on Recess (5/31/2017)