Wednesday, July 8, 2015

If this is Wednesday, this must be DC (wait, did I say that already????)

OK, you got me, I used that blog title in June.

Yet, here it is again, Wednesday and I’m in DC.

This trip is for a planning retreat on an AFT initiative to put Patients Before Profits, with Ole and Matt, from the AFT Connecticut organizing and communications departments.

It couldn’t have come at a better time.

We only need to look at our own Connecticut hospital to see how “not for profit” hospital systems are attempting to shed non profitable parts of their business, regardless of how it effects patients in the communities they are chartered to serve.

Why?  They’re “not for profit” aren’t they?

The hospitals may be, but the people running them are not. Salaries and bonuses are exurbanite, and at the expense of the most vulnerable in our communities.

Least you think healthcare has the corner on squeezing personal wealth out of the working class, let us not forget charter schools. This is not to say that charter schools are by necessarily bad.  In fact, it was former AFT president Al Shanker who first proposed the idea, but when the Walmart family gets into a business, that’s a red flag.  Link to an article.

The Connecticut legislature recognizes the danger so much that it passed a bill to protect the public’s right to accountability in charter schools, which the governor has just signed. Link

Let me close with by reminding you that both hospitals and schools are public institutions that rely on taxpayer money to provide vital services.  There is an ethical responsibility to ensure that those moneys are not profited and that those services are truly provided as intended.

We must reign in those whose ethical beliefs do not align with this.

Our students, our patients and society are at risk.



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