WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Wednesday, March 4, members and organizers from SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania travelled to Washington, D.C. to stand on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court with hundreds of other supporters of the Affordable Care Act and delivered a simple message – don’t take my care.
The Court heard oral arguments on Wednesday in King v. Burwell, a case with the potential to unravel the healthcare law and leave more than 8 million Americans without healthcare. The case challenges the validity of tax subsidies helping millions of Americans buy health insurance. If the court rules against the law, those subsidies could be cut off for everyone in the three dozen states using healthcare.gov, the federal exchange website.
During the rally, Michelle Boyle, an RN from Allegheny General Hospital, spoke to the crowd about her personal reasons for joining supporters to defend the law.
“My mother-in-law, Hannah Jewel Brown, lived an American Dream,” said Boyle. “She worked hard all her life so her son could have a better life than she did. She gave to her family, her community and her country… then came a nightmare too many of my patients know – she suffered from treatable, chronic conditions of early Parkinson’s and hypertension. She lost access to affordable healthcare and treatment. A year later, my husband and I went to her funeral.”
“The Affordable Care Act would have allowed her access to healthcare,” said Boyle. “She would have lived long enough to play with her grandchildren. As it is, my daughters can only hold her picture instead of her hand.”
Boyle is one of several nurses, doctors and others who have contributed their names and testimony to an amicus brief filed with the Court by SEIU last month.
“I have included my name on the King v. Burwell amicus brief because I want other people to have affordable healthcare so they can live to see their grandchildren,” said Boyle. “It’s called the Affordable Care Act for a reason. Affordability is the point. It doesn’t get much clearer than that. It’s affordable so people do not have to choose between good healthcare and going bankrupt.”
A decision in the case is expected by the end of June.
Read each of the stories from across the country contributed to the amicus brief below:
- Marilyn Ralat Albernas, RN (Florida)
- Dr. Marcus Sandling (New Jersey)
- Jay Joshi, retired (Texas)
- Michelle Boyle, RN (Pennsylvania)
- Janet Wolfe, Healthcare Worker (Oregon)
- Michele Evans, Small Business Owner (Montana)
- Deborah McBee, retired educator (New Hampshire)
- Claudette Newsome, Independent Contractor (Texas)
- Chrysandra Roland, Secretary (Georgia)