Young Americans continue push for health care reform on Hill, hail inclusion of key provision in House bill
Young Americans from 30 states are on Capitol Hill today to continue the push for comprehensive health care reform. Y.I. Want Change, a national coalition of over 20 youth organizations representing millions of young Americans, organized the lobby day. In addition to bringing young people to the Hill today, the Y.I. Want Change coalition released its policy agenda and announced with Speaker Pelosi and Representatives Van Hollen and Dahlkemper a major policy victory for young people that will be included in the final House bill: a provision allowing young Americans to stay on their parents’ insurance through the age of 26.
“Speaker Pelosi and Representatives Dahlkemper and Van Hollen’s leadership on this key provision – and other important pieces like the public option and strong anti-discrimination language – is a testament to the House’s commitment to provide health care coverage that is affordable, competitive, continuous, comprehensive and fair for young Americans,” said Heather Smith, President of Rock the Vote. “We are going to take the momentum from this day and work with the House and Senate to ensure the remainder of our policy priorities are incorporated into the final legislation.”
“Young people have fought all summer to have our voices heard in this debate, and Congress is listening,” said Erica Williams, Deputy Director of Campus Progress. “The health care crisis is young America’s crisis. Affordability, not invincibility, is the reason young people don’t have health insurance, and we are committed to making quality health care affordable for young Americans.”
In addition to the provision allowing young adults to stay on their parents’ insurance through the age of 26, the Y.I. Want Change coalition is pushing six other policy priorities as part of the Y.I. Care Agenda released today (full details available at www.yiwantchange.org):
- Increasing premium support for low-income Americans and limiting out-of-pocket expenses to ensure that health insurance is affordable;
- Including a public option to provide greater choice for young Americans;
- Ensuring that any “young invincible” plan covers preventative and chronic care and limits out-of-pocket expenses;
- Including funding to provide education and workforce training to young Americans to assist in the transition;
- Ensuring affordable access to health insurance exchanges for all Americans; and
- Ending discrimination in the provision of health insurance.
“Health care reform that is good for young Americans is good for all Americans. That is why these policy priorities must become an integral part of the final legislative package,” said Ari Matusiak, co-founder of Young Invincibles. “The time of leaving people uninsured, unprotected and insecure has passed. The coalition we have convened is the clearest indication yet that health care is an issue all Americans care about. We’re here to tell Washington that it has to act.”
For more information and resources, including a detailed analysis of the Y.I. Want Change policy priorities, please visit www.yiwantchange.org. To speak to coalition spokespeople please contact Rebecca Abou-Chedid at media (at) younginvincibles.org / 202-256-4096 or Chrissy Faessen at firstname.lastname@example.org / 202-368-1706.
Y.I. Want Change is a national coalition of more than 20 youth organizations and their affiliates, including Advocates for Youth, Black Youth Vote, Bus Federation, Campus Camp Wellstone, Campus Progress, Center for Community Change, Choice USA, College Democrats of America, Daily Get Up, Energy Action Coalition, 80 Million Strong, Forward Montana, Future Majority, Generation WE, Generational Alliance, NAACP Youth and College Division, Rock the Vote, Roosevelt Institution, Student PIRGs, Young Democrats of America, Young Invincibles, and Young People First. For additional information please visit www.yiwantchange.org.