Kansas and Missouri are among just 14 states that have not expanded Medicaid. This must change, and we need your help.
As our team works with community members to advance the health of children and families, we see first-hand the damage caused by lack of access to healthcare. Harm extends beyond diminished physical and mental health, although those results are undeniable. Lack of access to healthcare harms financial health, interfering with parents’ efforts to keep their jobs, maintain stable housing and feed their families healthy meals. As a result, poor healthcare access for parents also damages children’s ability to succeed in school, in turn harming their long-term prospects.
The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified these impacts. Lack of access to Medicaid has made our communities more vulnerable to the pandemic, but not evenly so. Centuries of structural and systemic racism continue to make Americans who are Black, Indigenous or People of Color more likely to work in low-wage jobs which lack health insurance benefits. Unsurprisingly, COVID-19 has hit BIPOC communities with magnified force. The CDC reports that those who are BIPOC are 4 to 5 times more likely to be hospitalized as a result of COVID compared to non-Hispanic white people. Medicaid expansion is critical to racial and economic justice as well as health.
In this time of extraordinary hardship and continuing racial and economic inequalities, we must act. Missourians have the opportunity to pass Medicaid Expansion, Amendment 2, on the August 4, 2020 ballot. Passing Amendment 2, would:
- Deliver healthcare to Missourians who have jobs without insurance and can’t afford to see a doctor
- Cover up to 230,000 Missourians, including those who earn up to 138% of the federal poverty level, or $26,000 for a family of three
- Enhance funding for safety net hospitals and community health clinics, creating about 20,000 new jobs
This moment demands action. Here are six easy things you can do, recommended by the Yes on 2 Healthcare for Missouri Initiative:
- Vote Yes on Amendment 2 to expand Medicaid to 230,000 working Missourians. If you can’t get to the polls, please vote by absentee or mail-in ballot.
- Text 10 friends and ask them to sign Jobs with Justice’s pledge to vote YES ON 2. Make sure your friends are registered to vote.
- Follow @YESON2MO on social media and share their posts.
- Get involved in the Yes on 2 campaign by volunteering, endorsing, donating.
- Write and submit a letter to the editor in support of Amendment 2 to your local newspaper and share your story with Jobs with Justice.
- Endorse Yes on 2 as an organization.
Please join us ensuring that Missourians have access to life-saving treatment and preventative services. Be sure to vote on August 4.
President/CEO, KC Healthy Kids