Loading

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights  & The Leadership Conference Education Fund
The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Health Care

All Americans should have access to high quality, comprehensive, and affordable health care. Nearly 50 million people in the United States lacked health care in 2010 - 16.3% of the population, accordidng to the U.S. Census Bureau. Even those with health coverage face rising costs and decreased benefits. Children, older Americans, and people of color are especially at risk of not receiving the health care they need. In 2010, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to address the health care needs of all Americans and protect the interests of health care consumers.

Defending Health Care Reform

By addressing the huge disparities in both access to and quality of care, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act takes a momentous step toward ensuring that all Americans can benefit from affordable, high-quality health care.

Factsheets on Health Care Disparities Facing Racial and Ethnic Minorities

Amicus Briefs in Support of the  Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010

The Leadership Conference has joined the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and the American Civil Liberties Union in filing an amicus brief with the Supreme Court arguing that the minimum coverage provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is clearly constitutional and, in fact, advances equal opportunity and liberty for millions of disadvantaged Americans.

The Leadership Conference has also signed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the Medicaid Expansion Provision of the Affordable Care Act . The brief outlines U.S. obligations under international treaties to address disparities in both access to and quality of coverage and care. In its statement of interest, The Leadership Conference said the Medicaid Expansion Provision “will lead to broader access to quality health care by the most vulnerable segments of society, including children, people of color, women, seniors, and people with disabilities.”

The National Women’s Law Center brief on behalf of 60 organizations in United States Department of Health and Human Services, et al v. State of Florida, et al. The brief "explains what’s at stake for women in the challenge to the new health care law and why the ACA, in correcting fundamental gender inequities in the health insurance and health care markets, is an appropriate exercise of federal Commerce Clause authority and therefore is constitutional."

The Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum et. al. brief in support of the arugment that the Court should sever the minimum coverage provision and leave the remainder of the Affordable Care Act intact if the Courtfinds the provision unconstitutional.

National Health Law Program et. al. brief in support of the Medicaid Expansion Provision of the Affordable Care Act

Items 11 - 20 of 42  Previous12345Next

Congress Urged to Pass Improved Child Nutrition Program

July 19, 2010 - Posted by Tyler Lewis

Guest Post by Sophie Milam

This year, Congress is considering legislation that would strengthen several nutrition programs critical to the well-being of our nation's children. With one in four children struggling with hunger and one in three obese or overweight, reauthorizing the nation's two cornerstone child nutrition laws – the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 and the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act – collectively known as Child Nutrition Reauthorization could not come at a more critical time.

Read more >>

Link to this post

New Campaign Works to Ensure Older Adults Receive the Best Health Care Possible

April 8, 2010 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

Today, the National Partnership for Women and Families, National Health Law Program (NHeLP), and Community Catalyst, launched the Campaign for Better Care to ensure that health reform works for older adults with multiple health problems. 

Read more >>

Link to this post

Research on Childhood Obesity Highlights Need for Prevention

March 16, 2010 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

New research released in the most recent issue of the medical journal, "Pediatrics," suggests that minorities may be disproportionately likely to become obese.

Read more >>

Link to this post

Advocates Rally in D.C., Call for Health Care Reform Now

January 27, 2010 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

 

At a rally yesterday, an energetic group of about 250 activists, workers, and students, gathered in front of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to send a message to Congress that it should pass health care reform legislation and extend coverage to all Americans.

Former House Whip David Bonior, D. Mich., spoke at the rally, urging Congress to "spine-up" and reform a health care system in which 47 million Americans are uninsured, and 14,000 Americans lose their health insurance provider every day.

Representatives from a number of unions and civil rights groups, including the Health Care for America Now coalition, MoveOn.org, NAACP, Common Cause, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, and the Service Employees International Union, also spoke at the rally.

Link to this post

Civil Rights Groups Raise Concerns about Final Health Care Bill

January 7, 2010 - Posted by Ron Bigler

As the House and Senate begin final negotiations on health care reform legislation, a coalition of civil rights groups has sent a letter (PDF) to congressional leaders and President Obama urging them to support changes in the final bill that will ensure affordable, quality health care for all American families.

The letter — signed by leaders of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the NAACP, the National Council of La Raza, the Campaign for Community Change, the United States Student Association, and Powerpac.org — states that:

"We are deeply concerned about several aspects of the current Senate bill and therefore, the final outcome of health reform policy, including the taxing of health benefits, a lack of shared responsibility to ensure employers are contributing to their workers' health insurance, and the absence of a public option to keep insurance companies honest and keep insurance costs down."

Full text of the letter is available here (PDF).

Link to this post

Civil Rights Groups Encourage Blacks and Latinos to Speak up on Health Care Reform

October 5, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

Today, a coalition of civil rights organizations announced a joint initiative to encourage millions of Black and Latino Americans to make a final push for universal health care coverage. The coalition includes the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Council of La Raza, the Center for Community Change, the United States Student Association, PowerPAC.org, and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR).  

"The guarantee of a fundamental right to quality health care won't mean anything if the reform legislation leaves out millions of Americans," LCCR President Wade Henderson said. "As we get down to crunch time, we believe that this discussion and our media campaign will help these voices be heard in the halls of Congress and at the White House."

The initiative includes television, print and online ads in English and Spanish that will run in four states with large Black and Latino populations: Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, and North Carolina. The ads are part of a broader grassroots effort to educate members of Congress about the importance of health care reform to their minority constituents.

More:
Wade Henderson's full speech
Print Ad - Spanish (PDF)
Print Ad - English (PDF)

Link to this post

Harvard Study Highlights Urgency of Health Care Reform

September 22, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

Results of a recent Harvard study show that approximately 45,000 people die in the U.S. each year primarily because they lack health insurance. That's one death every 12 minutes.

Researchers also concluded that American adults below the age of 65 face a 40 percent higher risk of death if they lack coverage.  These findings, along with the latest U.S. Census Bureau report that 46.3 million people lacked health insurance coverage in 2008, emphasize the urgency of Congress's current efforts to pass legislation that will expand access to health care.

Dr. David Himmelstein, a co-author of the study and an associate professor of medicine at Harvard, pointed out that daily more Americans are dying "because of inaction ... than drunk driving and homicide combined."  Other authors emphasized that lacking insurance increases the likelihood of dying from complications from preventable diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes. 

Link to this post

Health Care Reform Must Stop Insurance Companies from Denying Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions

September 18, 2009 - Posted by Tyler Lewis

The health insurance industry's widespread use of "pre-existing conditions" is unfair and discriminatory.  These conditions are often illnesses, injuries, or diseases that will not be covered under certain health insurance plans, or in some cases, can prevent a person from getting health insurance at all.

Recently, the National Women's Law Center issued a report on just how broadly health insurance companies define "pre-existing condition" (PDF) to avoid paying for people's treatment and how those practices discriminate against women.  Currently, in eight states and the District of Columbia being a victim of domestic abuse qualifies as having a pre-existing condition, allowing insurers to deny coverage to women who have been abused in the past. 

Both versions of the health reform bills currently being considered in Congress would ban insurance companies from using pre-existing conditions to deny coverage, guaranteeing that this egregious practice would be stopped.

"It is unconscionable that health insurance companies would deny coverage to a woman who has been the victim of domestic violence.  This extraordinary and discriminatory practice is just one more example of how badly broken the system is and why Congress must pass health care reform legislation this fall," said Wade Henderson, president and CEO of LCCR.

Link to this post

LCCR President Wade Henderson Speaks on the Importance of Expanding Access to Health Care

September 16, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

Wade Henderson

Wade Henderson, president and CEO of LCCR, was a featured speaker at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's 2009 Annual Conference yesterday.

In his speech, Henderson explained why health care is a pressing civil and human rights issue, emphasizing the racial and economic disparities in health care.  He also talked about the role federal health care legislation can play in expanding access to health care, legislation that the civil rights community is currently working to get Congress to pass.

"When people lack access to quality and affordable healthcare, a medical emergency can bankrupt a family. As long as families face this danger, they have no economic security. Without access to quality and affordable healthcare, chronic medical problems can prevent a worker from changing or keeping jobs and advancing at work, which destroys equal employment opportunity. Without access to quality and affordable health care, poor health can keep a child out of school, which denies that child educational opportunity," said Henderson.  "[A]ccess to health care – and the federal policies that affect it – are woven into the fabric of civil rights, economic empowerment, and social justice."

Link to this post

Items 11 - 20 of 42  Previous12345Next

Amicus Briefs

Minimum Coverage Provision

The Leadership Conference has joined the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and the American Civil Liberties Union in filing an amicus brief with the Supreme Court arguing that the minimum coverage provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is clearly constitutional and, in fact, advances equal opportunity and liberty for millions of disadvantaged Americans.

Medicaid Expansion Provision

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights has also signed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the Medicaid Expansion Provision of the Affordable Care Act. The brief outlines U.S. obligations under international treaties to address disparities in both access to and quality of coverage and care. In its statement of interest, The Leadership Conference said the Medicaid Expansion Provision “will lead to broader access to quality health care by the most vulnerable segments of society, including children, people of color, women, seniors, and people with disabilities.” The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the case in March 26-28.

Campaigns

Health care for America NOW! Quality, affordable health care we can all count on.

More Information On

    Health Care Reform

    Federal Programs

    Health Care Issues

    Recent Reports

    In The News

    Recent news clips on this issue.

    View more news clippings on Delicious.com

    Our Members