Contact: Mike Myslinski at 650-552-5324 or Sheri Madsen at 916-440-0980
SACRAMENTO – Leaders of the educator-focused “Teachers for Healthy Kids” project are calling on the governor to find a “sustainable statewide solution” for covering the state’s nearly 800,000 uninsured children as California health care reform takes center stage next year.
“We are now at a critical juncture, which presents an opportunity for your office and the Legislature to work together so health care coverage can become a reality for all children,” the project’s leaders said in a letter sent to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. “California needs a sustainable statewide solution for health coverage for children, and thus we urge you to include a plan for all children in your 2007-08 budget.”
The letter is signed by Barbara E. Kerr, president of the 340,000-member California Teachers Association, and Christopher C. Ohman, CEO of the California Association of Health Plans. CTA and CAHP run the successful Teachers for Healthy Kids effort, a partnership entering its fifth year that has led to more than 150,000 students being covered by affordable public health, dental and vision insurance. Public school teachers working with the project have informed thousands of parents about the state’s low-cost Healthy Families insurance and no-cost Medi-Cal program.
Teachers for Healthy Kids now joins scores of other children’s advocacy groups in calling on the governor to make his stated pledge to insure all kids a reality in the state budget.
The joint letter from CTA’s Kerr and Ohman of CAHP notes that teachers are also working with local Children’s Health Initiatives that are partners with the Teachers for Healthy Kids program in many counties. “These efforts have made a difference, but more still needs to be done.”
Teachers for Healthy Kids is funded by The California Endowment foundation. For more information about the project, go to www.teachersforhealthykids.com.