Champaign, Illinois, Education Support Staff Union Endorses HR 676

The Champaign Schools Education Support Staff Union, affiliated with the National Education Association and the Illinois Education Association, has endorsed HR 676, national single payer health care legislation, reports Heidi Johnson, Executive Board Member of the union.

“As an elected union officer I see how the healthcare benefits for our members is becoming harder and harder to get during our negotiations,” said Johnson. “I am afraid that in the near future it will become even worse,” she said in explaining why the union took this action for single payer.

“I am from Germany originally so I am very familiar with single payer healthcare system and unfortunately had to live under this American style corporate system for many years. Believe me, this healthcare system in the US is horrible, and I believe that this country could do so much better,” Johnson stated.

The union has 400 members including secretaries, custodians, bus drivers and monitors, food service workers, maintenance and teacher aides.

David Johnson, a retired carpenter, host of the Central Illinois World Labor Hour radio program, and a delegate to the Champaign County AFL-CIO, was instrumental in bringing the single payer issue to this union.

In other single payer news, two additional congresspersons, Jim McGovern of Massachusetts and Alma Adams of North Carolina signed on in September as co-sponsors of HR 676, bringing the total to 53.