For immediate release
September 11, 2017
UNITE HERE Statement on Passage of California’s SB 17
Sacramento, CA – The bipartisan passage of California Senate Bill 17 today out of the State Assembly is a major victory for all working people, and our union applauds the courage of the 66 California Assemblymembers who voted yes for this bill – and thus yes to a health care system that puts people over profits.
“Today was a victory for every day Americans over the powerful pharmaceutical corporations that have used their money and political power to control health care policy in this country for far too long,” said D. Taylor, President of UNITE HERE. “By passing SB 17, California Assemblymembers voted to ensure that no longer will Californians have to choose between paying for the prescription medicine their lives depend on or paying rent this month. No longer will campaign donations from pharmaceutical companies be enough to buy the silence of politicians in the price gouging that is keeping far too many Californians from the medication they rely on.”
SB 17 requires drug makers to provide purchasers with advance notice of big price increases on certain prescription drugs. The bill also stipulates that health plans must report drug spending information to state regulators. After passage in the State Assembly today, Senate Bill 17 will move back to the State Senate for concurrence, where an earlier version of the bill passed 28-to-10 (with two “not voting” members) on May 30th of this year. UNITE HERE is a co-sponsor of the bill, along with the California Labor Federation and Health Access; a broad coalition of labor, community, environmental and health plans have been working together throughout the year to pass this bill.
UNITE HERE represents 270,000 members working in the hotel, gaming, food service, manufacturing, textile, distribution, laundry, transportation, and airport industries in the U.S. and Canada. Learn more at www.unitehere.org