By Peg O’Connell, Chair of Care4Carolina
This has been a tough week. As you probably know by now, the North Carolina legislature has decided not to include a solution to close the coverage gap in their budget conference report. They nibbled around the edges with a few good Medicaid expansions for new moms and parents whose children who are placed in foster care but they failed to come up with a real comprehensive solution for the 600,000 North Carolinians who are caught in the coverage gap. My heart is fractured, but my spirit is not broken.
When I face difficult times like this, I look for inspiration in the words of Sir Winston Churchill. I am of an age that I actually remember Sir Winston. I think of him and the British, alone, on their island nation, facing the worst possible odds. Would the free world survive? His most remembered quote from that time was, “Never surrender!”
So, I say to you, Care4Carolina supporters, stakeholders and people who care about those caught in the coverage gap, “Care4Carolina will never surrender.” We will not give up. There are 600,000 North Carolinians, 12,000 of whom are veterans, more than 100,000 of whom are parents, most of whom are working Americans who simply don’t make enough to get help buying health insurance, who will never know our names or what we are trying to do. But, they are counting on us and we cannot let them down.
I am old and was hoping for a peaceful retirement with my wonderful husband, my grandchildren and my cats, but we are not done yet! So, I ask you to stick with Care4Carolina and our mission to close the coverage gap. We have made progress and we are going to get there. With your and God’s help we will find a path forward and our legislature will enact a solution to close the entire coverage gap.