Home Healthcare Workers, Fighting for Medicaid Expansion,
Escorted Out Of Capitol
Harrisburg, PA: A group of demonstrators made up of homecare and other low-wage workers from across the state were escorted off of the Capitol Complex Wednesday night after announcing plans to hold constant vigil inside the building through the budget hearings. The group is pushing to include Medicaid Expansion in the budget. Demonstrators were informed that once legislature was not in session, the building is closed to the public. In order to make sure they could come back tomorrow to keep delivering the message, they opted to leave rather than face arrest.
“We know the best way to get Medicaid Expansion is to talk to ask many folks as possible,” said Mary Lou Camery, a healthcare worker from Erie. “So we will be back bright and early tomorrow morning to continue urging the governor and legislators to do the right thing and provide healthcare coverage to over half a million Pennsylvanians.”
The low-wage workers have been participating in events to raise awareness about the importance of Medicaid Expansion for months. They will continue to meet with legislators and hold events all week, and say this decision is too big to be made without the input of those affected.
“My life and my health are at stake,” said Guy Anthony from Bucks County. “I was hospitalized for congestive heart failure because I can’t afford the medicine to keep my high blood pressure in check. I wanted to be here as a reminder to our legislators that there are real people and real consequences behind their decisions.”
“I’m a homecare worker – my career is taking care of others and yet I can’t afford healthcare myself,” continued Camery. “Even though we can’t stay all night at the capitol, we’re committed to getting through to our lawmakers, and making them see that we are the faces of Medicaid Expansion.”