HEALTH CARE JUSTICE NOW: U2K UPDATE

The Newsletter of the Universal Health Care 2000 Campaign (U2K)

February 1st, 2000 (Issue no. 3)

 

Health Care Justice NOW is a bi-monthly fax/email service to U2K endorsers. It aims to keep endorsers of U2K informed and engaged.  It is also an outreach tool, so please distribute it widely, and encourage other groups to subscribe through contacting us.  Do you know of someone in your organization that wants to receive Health Care Justice NOW?  Let us know! There are now over 170 individuals that subscribe to Health Care Justice NOW.  (To unsubscribe, email us at uhcan@uhcan.org.)

 

WE'VE MOVED!  U2K'S NEW EMAIL ADDRESSES

 

The U2K Campaign has a new email address.  To send us email, please use the address uhcan@uhcan.org.  To reach Linda Walling, Faith Communities Coordinator for the U2K Campaign, please email her at u2kwalling@aol.com.

 

U2K BRINGS DOZENS OF NEW ENDORSERS ON BOARD

 

The staff has been busy at the U2K Campaign office, and so have the endorsing organizations!  The last two weeks of January brought 45 new endorsers to the U2K Campaign, including five major national organizations, four new states (CT, MN, RI and WI) and a host of diverse local organizations from across the country.  The new organizations that have chosen to endorse U2K are listed below.

 

National: Women Strike for Peace, Women's Health Institute, General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church, National Coalition for the Homeless, Families USA, NETWORK: A Catholic Social Justice Lobby

 

State:

Connecticut Coalition for Universal Health Care (CT), Health Action New Mexico (NM), Minnesota COACT (MN), Michigan Older Women's League (MI), Gray Panthers of Metropolitan DC (DC), Gray Panthers of Rhode Island (RI), Ohio Public Health Association (OH), Nebraskans for Peace (NE), Coalition for Wisconsin Health (WI), Missouri Women's Network (MO), Coalition for Consumer

Justice (RI), SEIU Ohio State Council (OH)

 

Local:

Services for Independent Living (OH), Older Women's League, Greater New York Chapter (NY), Gray Panthers of Sacramento (CA), Gray Panthers of Houston (TX), Gray Panthers of Austin (TX), Gray Panthers of South New Jersey (NJ), Gray Panthers of Northern California (CA), Berkeley Gray Panthers (CA), GP of San Francisco (CA), GP of Greater Albuquerque (NM), GP of Metro Detroit

(MI), GP of South DadeCounty Florida (FL). Coalition for Universal Health Care (DC), Public Health Association of New York City (NY), Arc of Erie County (OH), Service Employees International Union, Local 47 (OH), Older Women's League, Farmington Chapter (MI), Physicians for a National Health Program, New York Chapter (NY), Joint Public Affairs Committee of the Jewish

Association for Services to the Aged (NY), Birmingham Alliance for Democracy (AL), Justice Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Birmingham (AL), Birmingham Human Rights Project (AL), Social Concerns Committee of St. Ann Church (OH), Social Concerns Committee of the Missouri United Methodist Church (MO), Great Neck Teachers Association, Retired Educators Chapter

GNTA/REC, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), District Council 37 (NY), Mercer County Peace Coalition/Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WV), League of Women Voters of the Akron Area (OH), Tri-County Independent Living Center (OH), Long Island Progressive Coalition (NY)

 

LINK UP TO U2K

 

The U2K web site will provide links to the web sites of local, state and national endorsing organizations.  If your organization has a web site, please send us your address today, and please link to U2K's site: www.u2kcampaign.org

 

U2K HITS THE ROAD: Enthusiastic Response at Families USA Conference

 

About 50 activists from across the country attended a Community Meeting called "Moving Towards Universal Coverage" at the Families USA Conference in DC on Jan. 22nd.  U2K Campaign Coordinator Rachel DeGolia fired up the room with a rousing presentation on the U2K Campaign that kicked off a brainstorm on making universal health care an issue in the 2000 elections.  The

suggestions included a national coordinated day of action, a U2K march and rally at the Republican Convention in Philadelphia in July, outreach to swing constituencies that will make U2K a truly broad movement, and a Spring Meeting that will bring together U2K activists from across the country.  U2K staff also networked with health care justice activists, who reaffirmed the viability and vitality of the Campaign.  Thanks to all of those who attended and gave valuable input!

 

U2K STEERING COMMITTEE CONVENES IN FEBRUARY

 

The U2K Campaign will launch its Steering Committee in early February.  The Steering Committee is the body of organizations responsible for strategic direction and state coordination of activities.  Membership on the Steering Committee is offered to some state or national organizations that undertake a coordinating role in the Campaign.

 

Coordinating organizations commit to educate within their ranks, reach out to other groups and plan engagement of candidates in cooperation with others. They commit staff time, volunteer time and/or substantial donations to the U2K Campaign. Leaders participate in state-level strategic thinking about priorities for the Campaign and may act as a "clearinghouse" for information, U2K events and endorsers within their state.

 

The Committee will be representative of all the major constituencies participating in the Campaign. A key role is to maximize the breadth of the spectrum of groups interacting with the public and politicians. The goal is that the Committee will consist of at least one organization from every state where U2K is active.  The Committee will meet on a regular, approximately monthly basis, most commonly via conference call.

 

The Steering Committee will determine the strategic direction and priorities of the Campaign. Decisions made by the Steering Committee will include (by a majority vote of entire body):

* New broad themes for and messages of the U2K Campaign, especially the connection between universal health care and other visible health reform issues, state-based efforts and U2K, and key constituencies' involvement in the Campaign;

* New thrusts or campaign strategies to broaden the endorsing organizations, deepen the level of engagement, and meaningfully approach candidates;

* Decisions related to national and coordinated events.

 

U2K FLASH UPDATES

 

**Northwest Ohio Universal Health Care Action Network (UHCAN) puts universal health care on the agenda at Primary debates

 

The U2K Campaign Staff are trying to catch up with Karen Krause of Northwest Ohio UHCAN, who is way ahead of the pack.  Karen is helping to plan a pre-Primary, Democratic Senatorial debate in Toledo, Ohio on February 1st. The primary is hotly contested by three candidates who are vying for the Democratic nomination in the Senate seat that Michael DeWine currently holds.  Karen is mobilizing Toledo and Cleveland activists to attend the forum and raise questions about universal health care.  "The candidates will talk about a patients' bill of rights," says Karen, "unless we put questions to them about universal health care."  Karen put out a call to activists from Cleveland and other parts of Ohio to attend the debate.  For more information, contact Karen Krause at 419/475-8380 or kkrause@accesstoledo.com

 

**February 2nd meeting in Chicago to broaden and deepen involvement in U2K

 

Over 30 leaders from the faith communities, the health care communities and advocacy groups will attend "Linkages for Health Care Justice: U2K and Beyond," a regional meeting on U2K in Chicago on February 2nd.  The meeting is being hosted by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America at their headquarters.  The meeting will discuss building short- and long-term coalitions and collaborations around universal health care.

 

**Missouri Lobby Day calls for candidate endorsement of universal health care

 

"The Coalition for a Just Health Care System, 20 committed members from the Central Missouri Chapter of the MO Assoc. of Social Welfare, Mid-Missourians for Universal Single-Payer Health Care, the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill of MO, the National Assoc. for Social Workers (MO Chapter) and the Reform Organization of Welfare (ROWEL) lobbied for the principles of a good health care system in Jefferson City on Wednesday, January 26th," writes Mary Hussmann, Chair of Mid-Missourians for Universal Single-Payer Health Care.  MO activists obtained U2K pledges from 14 state legislators. "A U2K endorsing list of opinion leaders like these from throughout the country will strengthen our efforts," says Mary.  For more information contact Mary Hussmann at mary.hussmann@gateway.net or 573/474-1983.

 

**Cleveland plans a U2K day of action in October

 

UHCAN Ohio, a statewide health care advocacy group, Cleveland Jobs with Justice, Citizens to Save Our Metro Health and other groups are planning a U2K day of action in early October 2000.  The groups will ask religious congregations to address the need for universal health care in Sunday services, and will hold a rally on Cleveland's Public Square that afternoon, at which they will ask candidates to sign a pledge.  They will invite candidates who have taken the U2K pledge to speak.  UHCAN Ohio invites other

organizations that would like to hold a coordinated day of action to participate.  For info contact Athena Godet-Calegeras at 216/241-8422 or uhcanoh@apk.net.

 

NEW U2K LITERATURE GOING TO PRESS IN FEBRUARY

 

U2K Campaign Staff are spilling red ink revising the campaign literature. Revamped versions of the Campaign and Education Handbooks will be available from the web site and in copies in February.  The new Education Handbook will include link various national and statewide health care issues with the goals of the U2K Campaign.  It will be a definitive tool for U2K activists to educate their members and ask informed questions of candidates.  U2K's new Campaign Handbook will be a tool kit that includes tips for outreach to new constituencies, approaching candidates and media outreach.  Watch this space and the U2K web site for late-breaking updates on U2K Campaign lit!

 

CONTACT US (Please let us know what you are doing in your state or region.)

 

Rachel DeGolia, Campaign Coordinator

Lee Chilcote, Field Organizer

U2K Campaign

2800 Euclid Ave., Suite 520, Cleveland OH 44115

Phone: 216/902-5577 * Fax: 216/241-8423

Email: uhcan@uhcan.org

Web Site: http://www.u2kcampaign.org

 

Linda Walling, Faith Outreach Coordinator

U2K Campaign

15905 Fernway Rd.

Shaker Hts. OH 44120

Phone: 216/751-2440

U2kwalling@aol.com

 

REQUEST TO INCLUDE NEWS about your organization's activities on behalf of U2K and health care justice to this newsletter: Send your message to uhcan@uhcan.org