ISPC Chicago statement on a Chicago Task Force on Employment of People with Disabilities

The Illinois Single-Payer Coalition Chicago supports the Chicago City Council resolution to create a Task Force on Employment of People with Disabilities.
People with disabilities have the same desire as those without disabilities to participate fully in our communities, which in our society includes having access to paid employment.
But In 2015, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 17.5% of people with a disability were employed, compared to 65% of those without a disability. 
Therefore, the Task Force should seek ways to make employment more accessible and workable for people with disabilities.
One critical aspect of doing that is to ensure that the costs of health insurance and health care do not present a barrier for either workers or employers.
To that end, we urge that the Task Force, when created, endorse Improved Medicare for all, also called single-payer health care, as an important step in facilitating employment of people with disabilities, improving the efficiency of all businesses, and expanding opportunities for entrepreneurship by people with and without disabilities.
Under this system: 
  • Everyone who lives in the United States will be automatically enrolled in the national health plan, relieving all employers of the burden of administering health care as an employee benefit. 
  • No small employer will have to worry about a rise in health insurance premiums due to one or two employees' or their family members' disability or serious illness.
  • No person will go into debt or be otherwise impoverished by out-of-pocket health care costs.
  • No one will have to choose to live in severe poverty in order to qualify for Medicaid and thereby avoid out-of-pocket health care costs.
  • Equal access to the full range of necessary health care for everyone will result in improved worker and population health.
  • We will greatly decrease administrative costs and improve business efficiency, allowing everyone to be covered while lowering health care spending overall.
What is good for people with disabilities, in terms of employment and access to health care, is good for our entire communities.
Approved March 9, 2017


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