On February 25, 2013, the Executive Board of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO unanimously endorsed HR 676, Expanded and Improved Medicare for All, the national single payer legislation recently reintroduced into Congress by Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D. MI).
George Nee, President of the Rhode Island AFL-CIO stated, “Year after year America continues to spend more and get less in return for our broken health care system, something must be done. The Rhode Island AFL-CIO strongly supports single-payer national health care as a way to insure all Americans, cut wasteful spending out of our health care system, and contain costs in a system where prices are spinning out of control. All Americans should have access to high quality affordable health care, that does not jeopardize the financial or physical well-being of themselves, their families, or the companies they work for.”
The vote followed a presentation on single payer health care by J. Mark Ryan, MD, FACP, President of the state chapter of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP). Dr. Ryan is an internist in Providence where he provides primary care at the University Medicine Foundation. “I was very impressed at how knowledgeable the Executive Board members were about HR 676 and the benefits of single payer national health care,” Dr. Ryan told the All Unions Committee.
The Rhode Island AFL-CIO is the umbrella organization for more than 250 local unions which represent over 80,000 working men and women across the state. The story on the RI AFL-CIO website is here: http://riaflcio.org/story/rhode-island-afl-cio-executive-board-adopts-resolutions