NCLR Condemns House of Representatives Vote to Strip Health Coverage from Millions of Americans
NCLR calls on the Senate to stop this attack on America’s children and families
WASHINGTON, D.C.—In response to today’s vote in the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and replace it with the American Health Care Act (AHCA), NCLR (National Council of La Raza) issued the following statement from President and CEO Janet Murguía:
“By voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with a law that undermines the very concept of health insurance, the Republican Congress has made a statement that the health and well-being of Americans is of no concern to them. By voting to strip away the protections that help ensure more Americans have access to affordable, quality health insurance, they are attempting to take us back in time to an era where an unexpected medical emergency could mean financial ruin for working families.
The ACA has resulted in significant gains for Latinos. More than 4 million Latino adults and over 600,000 Latino children have gained coverage since 2013, and millions more have benefited from important consumer protections. Today’s vote puts these gains in peril.
This damaging legislation permits states to strip federal protections for people with pre-existing health conditions, allowing discrimination due to medical history. Prior to the ACA, pregnancy was considered a ‘pre-existing condition’ and a baby born with a heart problem could be disqualified for coverage his entire life. Also, the Trumpcare plan allows insurance companies to once again sell health plans that do not cover doctor’s visits, hospitalizations, prescription drugs, and other essential health benefits.
When it analyzed the first version of the GOP’s AHCA bill in March, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that 24 million people would lose their health coverage and Medicaid would be slashed by over $880 billion. These losses would be felt deeply when it comes to American health and well-being, school attendance, worker productivity, family bankruptcies, barriers to small businesses, and many, many more ways.
The majority of Latino voters support the ACA and efforts to improve the law, not repeal it. It is now up to the Senate to listen to their constituents and stop this attack on American children and families. While this vote is a setback, it should also be a call to everyone around the country who has stood up and spoken out to protect and defend our health care system to continue to be active in this effort. We need your voices and your resolve to keep fighting and hold our elected representatives accountable.”
NCLR—the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States—works to build a stronger America by creating opportunities for Latinos. For more information on NCLR, please visit www.nclr.org or follow along on Facebook and Twitter.