NCLR CALLS FOR HEALTH REFORM THAT INCLUDES ALL WORKERS AND FAMILIES
Washington, DC—As our nation’s leaders consider health care reform in the coming weeks, NCLR (National Council of La Raza), the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States, strongly urges President Obama and Congress to make every effort to ensure that health care reform reaches all communities. No single community stands to gain as much from this important debate as Latinos. In the U.S., one out of every three uninsured persons and roughly 40% of all uninsured children are Latino. NCLR stands for health care reform that makes coverage affordable and accessible for everyone—all families and all children.
“We all use doctors and hospitals for care, so it’s right that everyone in the U.S. should contribute to a new health system. Latinos accept their responsibility, and if they have the opportunity, they will pay their fair share for the health coverage they need,” said NCLR President and CEO Janet Murguía.
NCLR cautions, however, that the positive impact of several reform proposals on the table may be undermined by additional measures that would severely restrict access to health coverage by mandating new, expensive verification and documentation procedures. “This debate should be about health care for all, and setting the nation on a pathway to future health and well-being. Adding layers of immigrant verification and bureaucratic red tape to a new health care system would guarantee that millions of citizen children are effectively barred from accessing preventive care and would raise the cost of health care,” Murguía noted.
“For this reason, we are extremely concerned that some view health reform as a way to scapegoat immigrants,” Murguía continued. “We agree that the immigration system needs to be fixed, but address that problem separately through immigration reform. The best way to reduce costs in our health care system is to ensure that people do not have to follow a long paper trail to get to the doctor and that everyone shares the costs of a new system. Making health care easier to use and accessible for all workers and children is simple common sense.”