Members of Positive Women’s Network-USA have dedicated enormous time and energy to stop the GOP repeal of the Affordable Care Act, first through the House Republicans’ “American Health Care Act” (AHCA), and now through the Senate Republicans’ “Better Care Reconciliation Act” (BCRA). We are fully aware that it has been a long haul, but the fight is not over yet. So we must keep that same momentum and fierce determination to #ProtectOurCare as we battle Trumpcare in the Senate.
We are in this fight together. Here are just a few things that our fierce PWN members and allies have been doing to spread awareness and stop this dangerous bill:
- PWN-USA CO member Mary Jane Maestas was arrested in DC in a sit-in in Senator Cory Gardner’s office 6/28–you’ll see her around the :30 mark in this clip from the Rachel Maddow Show
- PWN-USA OH member Olga Irwin participated in a protest outside Sen. Portman’s office and spoke to the media about her concerns with how Trumpcare could harm people living with HIV.
- PWN-USA Board Member Venita Ray from Texas organized a phone bank in Houston: 5 people made 257 calls on Monday 6/26!
- PWN-USA Colorado members have been protesting outside Senator Cory Gardner’s office in Denver, CO, and have been trying to chase him down during the recess–and recording and posting videos addressed to him, since he is dodging his constituents.
- PWN-USA Board Member and PWN-USA TX Senior Member Evany Turk organized a 30 young adults to phone bank target Senators while visiting her mother in Chicago.
- PWNer Masonia Traylor from Atlanta, GA, provided powerful testimony at the People’s Filibuster in Washington, DC. (see photo at top of story)
- PWN-USA’s Executive Director Naina Khanna also spoke at this event (see photo below).
- PWN-USA Policy Fellow Shyronn Jones organized a meeting with Senator Perdue for July 6th, by using the PWN-USA Action Alert template to request an appointment with Senator Perdue, found a form on his website to request a meeting and got a meeting with State Director and State Policy Director. She also submitted an op-ed to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
- PWNers Gina Brown and Grissel Granados were among the 6 members of the President’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS who resigned June 14 in protest of the administration’s lack of strategy or focus on the epidemic, highlighting the disastrous health care bills as evidence of its disregard for people living with and vulnerable to HIV.
- PWNer Gina Brown submitted an op-ed to the Times-Picayune about her decision to leave PACHA, and was also interviewed and quoted by the Daily Beast, TheBody.com, and The Hill about her decision.
- PWNer Grissel Granados had an op-ed published in SELF Magazine about her decision to resign from the President’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS.
- PWNer Connie Rose from Las Vegas organized a phone bank in Nevada.
- PWN ally Bryan Jones organized a phone bank in Cleveland.
- PWN-USA Policy Fellow Arianna Lint participated in a protest of the health care bill outside Sen. Marco Rubio’s office.
The bill passed by the House and the Senate’s version would allow states to waive the ACA’s essential health benefits requirement, including coverage for prescription drugs, hospitalization, emergency room services and more. Before the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it was legal for insurers to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, making it harder for us to access coverage. If the BCRA is passed in the Senate, premiums will skyrocket for women and for people with pre-existing conditions who are not currently in the insurance market or who have a gap in coverage at any point.
Further, both versions of the bill slash Medicaid–the program that covers over 40% of people living with HIV, as well as 40% of all children in the U.S., 67% of nursing home residents, 50% of all births and 60% of people with disabilities. The Senate bill’s cuts are even deeper than the House bill’s: Medicaid spending would be reduced by 26% by 2026, and by 35% by 2036.
We urge you to stay strong and keep fighting–this is not over yet. The vote on the Senate version was only postponed until after the recess. It’s important to schedule a meeting with your Senators as soon as possible) to discuss the importance of the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid for people living with HIV. We have provided you with our resource toolkit here to give you ideas, tools and resources to do your part.
What are you doing to fight Trumpcare? Let us know so we can add you to our roundup! Email your story (and photos and/or video if you have them!) to Jennie at firstname.lastname@example.org.