Sen. Bryant and Rep. Bobbie Richardson Fight for Women and Families

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In a letter to the editor in the News & Observer, Sen. Angela R. Bryant and Rep. Bobbie Richardson voice their concerns about their colleagues at the General Assembly and how their choices are standing in the way of women, families, and communities. This follows the closing of Franklin Medical Center, the only hospital in Franklin County, after the General Assembly refused to expand Medicaid, which would help keep rural hospitals afloat.  

From the News & Observer, 

No one will feel this burden more than women, who typically navigate the health care system not just for themselves but for their entire families. Tens of thousands of women continue to go without health care because Gov. Pat McCrory and many of our General Assembly colleagues refuse to expand Medicaid. Now those who live in rural counties where hospitals are shutting down have even less access to even emergency care. These women will have to travel farther and pay more in transportation costs to reach any facility where they can get any care.

In our state, we have no law providing for paid family leave or earned sick days for workers. That limitation will be even a bigger problem for women who can’t afford to take a full day off from work to drive to a different county to get health care or to take their family members to get treatment.

During this year’s legislative session, we heard very little that reflected the priorities, like health care, North Carolina families care most about. Instead, legislators spent time debating partisan issues like taking over the Greensboro City Council. North Carolina lawmakers have an opportunity in the coming months to address real issues like increasing wages, increasing access to health care and providing working families with the tools for greater economic security.

Before another hospital closes, we must demand that state lawmakers stand with women and families to protect health care for our communities by expanding Medicaid so that hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians can get the health care they need.

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