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NEA President: “Congress must provide quality, affordable health insurance for all”

WASHINGTON - September 18, 2009 -

NEA’s Dennis Van Roekel, president of the nation’s largest professional organization representing 3.2 million members, released the following statement on Sen. Max Baucus’ America’s Healthy Future Act:

“Sen. Baucus’ proposal does not meet the guidelines set by President Obama in his speech to Congress last week. The bill fails to provide affordable coverage for the 46 million uninsured through a public option, and will raise costs even more for middle-income workers.

“It is imperative for Congress to provide quality, affordable health insurance for all. America’s 8 million uninsured children need health care coverage to succeed in school.  They are sitting in classrooms focusing on toothaches or nagging coughs instead of their lessons. Our students are missing valuable class time because they are forced to stay home to recover from an illness because their parents can’t afford to get them medical attention.

“NEA will continue to work with the House and Senate to get legislation passed this year that reduces costs, protects current coverage, preserves choice of doctors, hospitals, and health plans and ensures affordable, quality health care for all.”

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The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional organization, representing 3.2 million elementary and
secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Sara Robertson  (202) 822-7823,