UnidosUS Statement Regarding Senate Deal on Budget Reconciliation Package
Washington DC—In response to the unveiling of a Senate deal on a budget reconciliation package, UnidosUS President and CEO Janet Murguía issued the following statement:
“UnidosUS applauds the agreement that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) unveiled last night on the ‘Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.’ This budget reconciliation and economic package meets the current moment in the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and rising prices for families. We urge Congress to pass this package and get it to the president’s desk as soon as possible.
“Most notably, this bill would prevent hardworking families already dealing with inflation from facing a huge spike in their health insurance costs by including a three-year extension of financial help that the American Rescue Plan provided to people who buy their own health insurance from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace.
“This legislation is vital to Latinos, who have some of the nation’s lowest levels of insurance coverage, and who have disproportionately suffered from the worst American pandemic in more than a century. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan’s financial assistance provisions, Latino participation in the ACA marketplace increased by 39% in just one year. More than 3 million Latinos rely on the health insurance marketplace for their health care, and they make up 25% of all marketplace enrollees, second only to non-Hispanic whites. The decision to continue that assistance is an important victory for health equity and people of color overall, who represented 60% of all increased Marketplace enrollment once the American Rescue Plan’s aid became available. It will also provide much needed relief when many still struggle to pay for the rising cost of food, gasoline, and other necessities.
“Other important provisions in the ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ include reducing the price of medicine by allowing Medicare to negotiate the prices of prescription drugs, and climate provisions that include making vital investments in low-income communities to help them adapt to climate change and our transition to a cleaner economy.
“While the ‘Inflation Reduction Act of 2022’ does not include everything families, including Latino families need, it would advance equity and critical health and policy priorities for our community. As such, we urge that the Senate take this important step forward as we continue to fight for the other health, tax, education, immigration, and housing policies Latinos need to experience a full and equitable recovery from the pandemic.”