2,000 at Rally Say 'Healthcare Is a Human Right'

In what could be a model for Massachusetts, New Hampshire and the nation, Vermont is poised to enact single-payer health care. On May 1, more than 2,000 people, including a large contingent from Brattleboro, marched on the Vermont statehouse.

The march was part of a movement that has earned the support of Vermont governor Peter Shumlin, and the state legislature. Shumlin lives in Putney, near Brattleboro. The insurance industry is working to kill the movement's momentum in the legislature.

"If Vermont passes single-payer health care, I will meet with President Obama and say, 'If Vermont can do this, so can the nation,'" U.S. senator Bernie Sanders said earlier.

The second photo, below, shows a sign that says the CEO of health insurance company Aetna was paid $15.3 million in 2009.

Last year, more than 44,000 Americans died because the U.S. does not have universal health care. Canada, Europe, Japan, and every other rich nation has universal health care. The May 1 march was organized by the Vermont Workers Center www.WorkersCenter.org

(UPDATE: On May 2, the web sites of the daily newspaper in Montpelier, The Times Argus, and of the state's biggest daily newspaper, the Burlington Free Press, had no coverage of the May 1 march and rally. Vermont is home to just 622,000 people, so a rally of 2,000 is unusual.)

Photos by Eesha Williams, taken on May 1, 2011.

To enlarge a photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "See full-size image."


public health

Vermont can teach the nation. We need to follow the outcomes of this program in the coming months and years.

to Vermonters

Best wishes to all Vermonters. I hope you can come through with this. We need single payer HR 676 in Vermont and the other 49 states. Details are at www.pnhp.org/publications/united-states-national-health-care-act-hr-676

Single payer

Thank you Vermont legislators for taking a positive step towards single payer for Vermont residents. This is what we need all across the USA. Anyone can get injured or become ill and it is only right that we are there to help such a person. Universal single payer is the way to go.

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