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Ohio Grocery Workers Decry McCain "Health Tax"

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Omaha Steve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-05-08 04:08 PM
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Ohio Grocery Workers Decry McCain "Health Tax"

Last update: 11:18 a.m. EDT Oct. 2, 2008
COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct 02, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Alarmed by the potentially devastating effects of a proposal to establish new taxes on employer-provided health benefits during an economic crisis, members of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 1059 appeared at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus this morning to discuss their concerns with Senator John McCain's health care proposals. Members of UFCW Local 1059 were joined by representatives of allied worker organizations, independent research institutions, local government officials, and community groups to call attention to McCain's "health tax" and other proposals that would leave Ohio middle class families without affordable health care.

Speaking from the Ladies' Gallery in the Ohio Statehouse, Nikki Rigano, a worker at the New Albany Kroger and member of UFCW Local 1059, had this to say about Senator McCain's health care proposals:
"Senator McCain's plan to establish a brand new 'health tax' would be irresponsible during the best of times, but during an economic crisis it threatens the well-being of middle-class families everywhere. Instead of creating new taxes, he should be helping hard-working Americans keep the tools they need to stay healthy. Putting affordable, quality health coverage out of reach for more than 900,000 Ohioans is simply not an acceptable option."
More than 1.2 million Ohioans currently have no health insurance and one million more are underinsured. Such dismal figures are hardly surprising given that premiums on health coverage in Ohio have risen more than 250% since 2000. Senator McCain's proposal would only make matters worse: According to a recent report by the Center for American Progress, a middle-class Ohio family could expect to pay an extra $900 in McCain's "health tax" by 2013, and 920,000 would lose coverage altogether under his plan.

UFCW represents more than 69,000 grocery, food processing, and health care workers in Ohio. Seventeen thousand Ohioans employed by Kroger, CVS, Rite Aid, Meijer, Michelina's, Rich Products, Birchwood Meats, and General Mills are represented by UFCW Local 1059.

UFCW Local 1059 members and UFCW representatives are available for comment. Media inquiries and interview requests should be directed to Allison Petonic, 614-633-7536.
SOURCE: United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW)

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