Wal-Mart pays workers too little
To the editor:
Do you remember when you could walk into a Wal-Mart and see signs hanging in the aisles exclaiming thanks from American workers for Wal-Mart customers saving American jobs by purchasing USA made products? I do. That was the time when it was easy for American’s to help Americans with their purchases. Those days at Wal-Mart have been gone as long as Sam Walton.
Flash forward to today. Wal-Mart workers can help other Wal-Mart workers by placing food items for their less fortunate co-workers in specially marked bins for Thanksgiving meal donations in their break room.
The idea of workers helping workers is a constant throughout American labor history. So what’s the problem? The behemoth Wal-Mart disavows any responsibility for creating the issue of working people being unable to make enough money to feed themselves. That’s the problem!
If Wal-Mart wants to really be part of the solution, they should pay their workers a living wage which would allow them to afford food, shelter and clothing. Oh, and maybe giving them Thanksgiving Day off to spend with their families instead of forcing them to work for the Walton family’s search of ever more profit would be a more welcome gesture.
Thanks for food drive support
To the editor:
Thanks to all who participated in Scouting for Food recently. In Derry and Londonderry we collected, sorted, and packed boxes of food exceeding last year’s total. The food was then delivered or picked up by the local food pantries.
On behalf of BSA Scouting for Food in the Nutfield District,
Brian D. Williams
Republicans should expand Medicaid access
To the editor:
Last Tuesday, I attended the public hearing in Concord regarding the expansion of Medicaid in New Hampshire. I was struck by the real life stories told there. From the young people struggling with chronic alcohol and drug problems who need long term treatment to help them rebuild their lives and become productive citizens, to the single mother born with Type I diabetes whose job did not pay enough for her to afford the medication she needed to stay healthy enough to work, to the woman who had a small business, worked two jobs and still had to choose between health insurance and paying the rent, these people and others all described a life of daily anxiety about being “one bad thing” away from homelessness.
Hospitals, doctors and other health-care providers see these problems close-up. One hospital caregiver told of the countless people who repeatedly end up in the emergency room because of chronic untreated conditions, receive expensive treatment to stabilize them, and then are released with no resources to get the medication and follow-up care they need to keep themselves healthy and productive. The Business and Industry Alliance testified in support of expanding Medicaid saying it would be helpful for the health of the people and improve the economy.
New Hampshire can get federal funding to expand Medicaid for single people making less than $15,800 a year. Last June, the New Hampshire House voted for this expansion, a straight forward and clean solution for tens of thousands of low-income Granite Staters. Republicans, who hold the majority in the Senate, refused this plan.
A bipartisan commission was set up to study the issue and came up with a compromise recommendation and Gov. Maggie Hassan called a special session of the Legislature to consider it. The House passed a bill which implemented the recommendation and compromised with the Senate by agreeing to over time shift enrolled adults from Medicaid to private insurance through the federal insurance exchanges. The Senate came up with a complicated bill with an unrealistic time frame for this transition which, because of the need for a federal waiver and more insurance companies to participate in the exchanges, practically guarantees that insured people would lose coverage after one year.
This “not my problem” attitude is shameful in a state as well educated as ours. Why has the New Hampshire Republican Senate leadership become so mean-spirited, small-minded and short-sighted? It is time for a values and reality check. My senator is Nancy Stiles and I urge her to do what is right.
Jobs needed more than Medicaid
To the editor:
We have heard from all the special interests. It’s unanimous: The organizations that would receive more of the money that hardworking Americans pay in taxes want Medicaid expansion. Is that a legitimate reason for Medicaid expansion? No.
If someone doesn’t have health insurance, is that a reason why taxpayers should have to pay for that person’s insurance? No. However, we do provide Medicaid for certain poor people, children, disabled, blind, pregnant women, and low-income families.
One question is, what percent of the population should be considered “poor” enough to burden taxpayers? Is it 5 percent, one in 20? Is it 10 percent, one in 10?
More than one out of every 10 New Hampshire residents is already covered by Medicaid. With Medicaid expansion, about one of every seven New Hampshire residents would be covered. That seems excessive.
A better question is: Why add more people to Medicaid when Obamacare subsidizes low-income people who buy their own insurance? Private insurance is more widely accepted than Medicaid and patients get better medical results.
The best question is: Why are we talking about Medicaid expansion when we should be talking about jobs?
Obamacare, Medicaid expansion, extended unemployment benefits, expanded food stamps, and many other programs are just band aids. They are attempts to cover up the fact that Democratic policies kill jobs, kill opportunities, kill hope, and build dependency on government | as they have been doing for decades.
Instead of discussing Medicaid expansion, our politicians should be focusing on ending job-killing government regulations, eliminating the excess taxes that make businesses invest elsewhere, and implementing policies that reward creating good jobs that would allow Americans to buy the things they need — including health insurance — and want, including a secure and comfortable future.