Virginia Working America Members Canvass for Health Care Access

Saturday, March 3, was cold and windy, but that didn’t stop six Working America members near Roanoke from hitting the streets in their communities to build support for Medicaid expansion. We knocked on 117 doors and got 37 signatures on our petition to expand Medicaid in Virginia. Here are a few of their stories:

Rina is a resident of Roanoke, and she suggested organizing a canvass. She and her husband, Jeff, both showed up to knock on doors. While they have access to affordable health care, they came out to make sure other folks have it too. Rina said, “I believe in it; we don’t need it now but could in the future. We don't have health care for all (in the U.S.) and until we can get it, I can do this. We’re a country who cares for other people.”

Betty — a former social worker — knows the value of Medicaid, especially for the folks she used to work with. She also has several family members who have benefited from the ACA and would benefit from Medicaid expansion.

David is a retiree who has had good health care benefits provided by his union job in the meat-packing industry. David remembers paying $10/month to insure his family of four. Having had some expensive medical procedures in the past, David believes everyone should have access to the health care they need.

The Virginia House of Delegates has passed a version of Medicaid expansion, but the Senate is stalling on a vote. The legislative session ends in mid-March. If the General Assembly passes Medicaid expansion, hundreds of thousands of people could gain access to the health care they deserve. Working America members in Southwest Virginia will continue to fight to make sure that their representatives do the right thing and expand Medicaid.

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