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Insurers Ask Employees to Lobby on Health Care Reform

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Aired 9/3/09

Two of America's biggest health insurers have been asking their employees to lobby members of Congress about health reform. The non-profit group Consumer Watchdog is asking California's attorney general to investigate.

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Above: Local San Diego editors debate the health care reform speech that President Obama delivered to the nation on Wednesday.

— Two of America's biggest health insurers have been asking their employees to lobby members of Congress about health reform. The non-profit group Consumer Watchdog is asking California's attorney general to investigate.

United HealthCare and Anthem/Wellpoint have collectively contacted more than 100,000 employees.

United Health Care says it has advocates that can give workers talking points on health care reform. Anthem/Wellpoint asks that people write letters urging Congress to reconsider their present course.

Consumer Watchdog's Judy Dugan says it's outrageous.

"These companies are providing sample letters to send to Congress," complains Dugan. "They are offering to put the employee through on the phone, right then and there during business hours."

Coercing or influencing employees' political activity is against the law.

Insurers say they're not forcing anybody to do anything.

Comments

Avatar for user 'Zeezer'

Zeezer | September 4, 2009 at 11:33 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

As a United employee, I find it rather ironic that those at the top seem to think the employees will be opposed to the public option. United has continually reduced the employees' health care benefits to the point that most of us would be among the first to sign up for the public option, if offered. So, as requested by the company, I diligently contacted every one of my Congressional representatives and vehemently encouraged them to PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE support a public option and greater, meaningful regulation on the totally out of control, profit-driven BUSINESS of insurance. (Okay, maybe part of that was a bit out of line with the company's "request" but, hey, they did ask me to get involved...)

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