October 12, 2017
LATINO LEADERS CONDEMN EXECUTIVE ORDER TO WEAKEN AFFORDABLE CARE ACT
WASHINGTON—The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA), a coalition of the nation’s 45 preeminent Latino advocacy organizations, condemns the executive order issued today that seeks to weaken the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) consumer protections. The executive order would ultimately expand access to association health plans and allow those participating in such plans to skimp on providing essential ACA benefits such as access to mental health services and maternity care. This executive order comes after several failed attempts in Congress to repeal the ACA, a health care plan that has proven to significantly benefit Latinos and all people across the nation. The ACA led to 4.2 million Latinos gaining health insurance coverage, bringing the Latino uninsured rate to a record low of 16.2 percent.
“Repealing the ACA failed in Congress, so now the President is taking steps to destroy it one piece at a time. This executive order will not in fact benefit most people, despite the rhetoric from the White House. Attempts to dismantle the ACA, in any form, will have a negative impact on the Latino community and our nation. Health care is a human right and ought to be treated as such by our President,” said Hector Sanchez Barba, Chair of NHLA and Executive Director of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement.
“This ploy to permit small businesses to join together to apply for short-term insurance will not offer critical prevention and mental health and oral health benefits and will lead to healthy persons leaving and destabilizing the State and Federal exchanges and insurance sector. Latinos have the most to lose as the insurance market implodes,” said Dr. Elena Rios, Co-Chair of NHLA’s Health Committee and President & CEO of the National Hispanic Medical Association.
“In another desperate attempt to deprive the people of this country life-saving care, Trump’s administration has released an Executive Order that further sabotages the Affordable Care Act by exempting insurance companies from essential consumer protections created by the ACA. Costs will skyrocket next year and insurance companies will be able to deny coverage to those with pre-existing conditions, further exacerbating health disparities for underserved populations. Willfully destroying the regulations that protect individuals from empty insurance plans is cruel and potentially illegal. Do not be fooled, this is fake healthcare. NLIRH will continue to stand strong as we advocate and bring voice to the need to expand health coverage, not deny it,” said Ann Marie Benitez, Senior Director of Government Relations of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH).
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ABOUT THE NATIONAL HISPANIC LEADERSHIP AGENDA
The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda is composed of 45 of the leading national and regional Latino civil rights and public policy organizations and other elected officials, and prominent Latinos Americans. NHLA coalition members represent the diversity of the Latino community – Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and other Latino Americans. NHLA’s mission calls for unity among Latinos around the country to provide the Latino community with greater visibility and a clearer, stronger influence in our country’s affairs. NHLA brings together Latino leaders to establish policy priorities that address, and raise public awareness of, the major issues affecting the Latino community and the nation as a whole. For more information, please visit: www.nationalhispanicleadership.org.
NHLA MEMBER ORGANIZATIONS
Alianza Americas | American G.I. Forum | ASPIRA Association | Avance Inc. | Casa de Esperanza: National Latin@ Network | Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute | Farmworker Justice | GreenLatinos | Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities | Hispanic Federation | Hispanic National Bar Association | Inter-University Program for Latino Research | Labor Council for Latin American Advancement | LatinoJustice PRLDEF | League of United Latin American Citizens | MANA, A National Latina Organization | Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund | Mi Familia Vota | National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures | National Association of Hispanic Federal Executives | National Association of Hispanic Publications | National Day Laborer Organizing Network | NALEO Educational Fund | National Association of Latino Independent Producers | National Conference of Puerto Rican Women, Inc. | National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators | National Hispanic Council on Aging | National Hispanic Environmental Council | National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts | National Hispanic Media Coalition | National Hispanic Medical Association | National Institute for Latino Policy | National Latina/o Psychological Association | National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health | Presente.org | SER Jobs for Progress National | Southwest Voter Registration Education Project | UnidosUS | United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce | United States Hispanic Leadership Institute | United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce | U.S.- Mexico Foundation | Voto Latino