Contact: Mike Myslinski at 650-552-5324
BURLINGAME – Barbara E. Kerr, president of the 340,000-member California Teachers Association, today praised Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez and Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata for continuing to move health care reform measures through the Legislature this week.
“The time to act on meaningful health care changes is now,” Kerr said. “We need affordable health care for all Californians and a system to provide universal coverage. There are more than 800,000 children in California who don’t have health insurance. When students are healthy, they come to school ready to learn.”
Teachers support reform legislation to make health care more affordable, expand access to all Californians, control excessive costs, and ensure that quality care and patient choice are protected.
“Health care costs have increased more than 123 percent since 1990,” Kerr said. “These increases are making it harder and harder for teachers to afford health insurance. We also hope that eventual cost-savings for school districts would provide additional classroom resources. If lawmakers don’t act now, the health care system will just get worse.”
Three health care reform proposals, including Assembly Bill 8 (Nuñez), Senate Bill 48 (Perata) and CTA co-sponsored Senate Bill 840, passed out of the Assembly or Senate this week. SB 840 by state Senator Sheila Kuehl provides medical, dental, vision and prescription drug coverage for every Californian and eliminates bloated administrative costs that now account for up to 50 percent of health care expenses.