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Sweeney: New Jersey’s Workers Need Affordable Health Care Coverage Now

TRENTON – Senate Labor Committee Chairman Steve Sweeney, D-Gloucester, Cumberland and Salem released the following statement regarding today’s joint Labor and Health, Human Services and Senior Citizen’s Committee Hearing about employee health care:

“The issue of affordable health insurance, or the lack thereof, is being raised right now because of the effect it is having nationally on working people and taxpayers.

“Here in New Jersey, taxpayers, through our State’s health care access programs for the working poor, are covering the costs of insuring workers of many of the State’s large corporations, even though many of these businesses can afford to provide the service to their workers.

“If these companies are making billions of dollars per year, why are hard working tax payers being burdened by having to pick up the health insurance tabs for full-time employees?

” Many of these companies claim that they ‘offer’ health insurance benefits to their workers, but then turn around and charge such high costs for the benefits that workers still cannot afford them. There is a difference between offering and providing and I find it offensive that these companies are offering something that they know their employees cannot afford.

“As the Chairman of the Senate Labor panel, I am committed to working with New Jersey’s corporations to find ways to expand health insurance coverage for all hard working New Jerseyans and their families.”