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Why It Mattered (email from RockTheVote)

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berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 07:55 PM
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Why It Mattered (email from RockTheVote)
Just got this email from RockTheVote:

Today, President Obama signed into law health care reform legislation that will change the lives of millions of young people. I know it would have changed mine.

Last October, I wrote to you about my story: I was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 22, one month before I graduated from college. Three months later, I was kicked off my father's insurance plan and couldn't get a new policy because of my pre-existing condition. At age 23 and without insurance, I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease. I had gone from being a healthy person within weeks of graduating to a cancer survivor living with Crohn's disease without insurance all by the age of 23.

I want you to know how much reforming the system mattered to people like me - and the millions of other young people who can't afford insurance or have been denied coverage.

Because of health care reform, young people will be allowed to stay on their parents insurance until the age of 26. Ten million young people without insurance will have access to it. Insurance companies won't be allowed to discriminate against you if you have pre-existing conditions. They can't drop your coverage if you get sick. And you can stay covered if you leave your job.

A lot of good things are going to happen because of this bill. Some now and some over the next few years. (You can check out the timeline on the Rock the Vote blog.) Whether you agree with the final product or think it was the wrong approach, I hope we can all agree that the status quo was broken. And young people fought hard to make it better.

To me, this process has highlighted two important truths. First, it demonstrated how critical it is for young people to stay engaged. Without your voice, we would not have gotten dependent care coverage and politicians could have dismissed young people as "young invincibles" who didn't have a stake in this debate. Second, despite the long and often ugly path to reform, we have seen that big things can happen in Washington, D.C. It may not be pretty or easy, but it is worth the effort.


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