City Resolution (Ithaca)

The following Resolution was passed by the City of Ithaca, NY 6/7/06:

Resolution In Support Of a Comprehensive, Single-Payer National
Health Care System


Whereas, the impact of the cost of healthcare on the City of Ithaca's taxpayers has been considerable and has continued to increase exponentially as is shown by the fact that in the year 2001 the city's cost of healthcare was $3,681,304 and $5,844,000 in the year 2005, and

Whereas, the percentages of the healthcare costs in relationship to the entire city of Ithaca budget for the last five years have been the following:

2001 9.19%
2002 10.82%
2003 12.48%
2004 11.65%
2005 12.01%

Whereas, enormous and rising profits of insurance companies, HMOs and pharmaceutical companies have resulted in limiting and virtually denying healthcare to as many as 100 million people in the United States; and

Whereas, the existence of thousands of public and private insurance payers has resulted in an unruly bureaucratic system and in confusion throughout every aspect of insurance coverage from patients to practitioners; and

Whereas, healthcare for all is a basic right under the UN Declaration of Human Rights and is a mandate under the U.S. Constitutional call to provide for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; and

Whereas, solutions that are often discussed other than a single payer solution imply limitations, high deductibles and the reduction of health services especially for the poor, the sick and elderly; and

Whereas, statistics show that the greatest barrier to health is poverty and that inequalities in healthcare diminish not only well-being but also everyone's ability to work and prosper; and

Whereas, Congressman John Conyers has introduced H.R. 676, the United States Nation Health Insurance Act, also known as the Expanded and Improved Medicare For All Act; and

Whereas, H.R. 676 would cover every person in the U.S. for all necessary medical care including prescription drugs; hospital, surgical, outpatient services; primary and preventive care; emergency services; dental and mental health; physical therapy; vision care and long term care among others, without deductibles; and

Whereas, a national movement is growing in support of a national single payer system, and, as a result, the number of members of Congress endorsing this bill has tripled in the past year; now, therefore, be it:

Resolved, that the Mayor and Common Council of the City of Ithaca endorse H.R. 676, The United States National Health Insurance Act, and call on the Congress of the United States to pass this bill and begin its implementation swiftly in order to reduce the suffering and dying in our city, our state and our nation.

Resolved, that copies of this resolution be sent to Senators Hillary Clinton and Charles Schumer, to Legislators Barbara Lifton and George Winner and to Congressman Maurice Hinchey.

"Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane." -Martin Luther King Jr.