Local residents testify about impact of healthcare crisis

Where: Unitarian Universalist Meetinghouse, 108 School Street, Bennington, Vermont

When: 7:00 PM, Thursday, February 19, 2009

What: For months, volunteers for the Vermont Workers’ Center have been surveying Vermonters from all across the state about their experiences with the healthcare system. The results have been clear: Vermonters believe that healthcare should be a human right, and many are suffering because of lack of access to affordable, quality healthcare. The crisis continues to worsen as the state’s budget problems have led to painful cuts to State health programs, exacerbating the crisis for thousands of Vermont families.

On Thursday, February 19, this conversation comes to Bennington as part of the “Healthcare is a Human Right” campaign, which is coordinated by the Workers’ Center, to build a movement that can help reform the State’s healthcare system so it will guarantee care to all Vermonters regardless of income. This event is also being sponsored by the Bennington Area Regional Council. The testimony about the impact the lack of access to healthcare has had on the lives of area families will be heard by a community listening panel comprised of faith leaders, health professionals and other community leaders.

“It is really exciting that this event is happening,” says Charlie Murphy, a Bennington resident who is helping organize the hearing. “People have to come out to build a movement to get the healthcare we need.”

Background: After conducting over 1,200 surveys and holding hearings in Brattleboro, Burlington, St. Albans, Lyndonville and Barre, on Human Rights Day, December 10, 2008, the Vermont Workers’ Center issued a report “Voices of the Vermont Healthcare Crisis: Healthcare Is A Human Right.” The report and accompanying video can be downloaded online.

Download print report: http://www.workerscenter.org/healthcare/

Watch 7-minute video: http://blip.tv/file/157451