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You remember how ObamaCare was all about making health care more affordable and protecting the most vulnerable, right?
And, surely you remember how much money and resources (i.e., members’ dues) the purple behemoth known as the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) put into the fight for ObamaCare—even going so far as (allegedly) beating Kenneth Gladney at a St. Louis town hall meeting.
Well, somehow we missed this last week:
One of the largest union-administered health-insurance funds in New York is dropping coverage for the children of more than 30,000 low-wage home attendants, union officials said. The union blamed financial problems it said were caused by the state’s health department and new national health-insurance requirements.
The fund is administered by 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union. Union officials said the state compelled the fund to start buying coverage from a third party, which increased premiums by 60%. State health officials denied forcing the union fund to make the switch, saying the fund had been struggling financially even before the switch to third-party coverage.
The fund informed its members late last month that their dependents will no longer be covered as of Jan. 1, 2011. Currently about 6,000 children are covered by the benefit fund, some until age 23.
The union fund faced a “dramatic shortfall” between what employers contributed to the fund and the premiums charged by its insurance provider, Fidelis Care, according to Mitra Behroozi, executive director of benefit and pension funds for 1199SEIU. The union fund pools contributions from several home-care agencies and then buys insurance from Fidelis.
Of course, when it comes to the SEIU, it must be someone else’s fault.
The union said in a statement that the state required the fund to participate in a new program — the Family Health Plus Buy-In Program — beginning in 2008. The union said it expected that by joining the program, many of its members would qualify for state assistance for health-insurance coverage. “Instead they raised insurance rate increases without any increase in funding, and then cut Medicaid funding to the same workers nine times in the last three years,” the union said in a statement.
And, more importantly, the union expects someone else to pay for their
mistakes lobbying efforts.
“We hope the state of New York will do the right thing and provide the funding necessary for this most vulnerable population of direct caregivers,” the union said in a statement.
Karma. It has such a nice ring to it. Yet, it seems just too kind of a word to describe the SEIU’s dilemma.
It’s sort of like the SEIU made a big batch of Kool Aid, and now the members’ kids are the only ones drinking it.
[There’s only so many waivers one can get from reality.]
[h/t Big Dog]
“I bring reason to your ears, and, in language as plain as ABC, hold up truth to your eyes.” Thomas Paine, December 23, 1776
For more news & views on today’s unions, go to LaborUnionReport.com