Senators Snowe & Collins stand up for children’s healthcare

Important first step toward comprehensive reform
AUGUSTA, ME – Last night, U.S. Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins stood up for Maine’s children by voting to reauthorize the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), an important first step toward fixing our broken healthcare system. When signed into law by President Obama, 4 million more American children will receive the healthcare they need.

“Senators Snowe and Collins made it clear that they are committed to seriously addressing our healthcare crisis,” said Nicole Witherbee, Ph.D., Federal Budget Analyst at the Maine Center for Economic Policy. “We applaud them for strengthening this important program, but taking care of our children is just the first step towards true reform that guarantees all Americans have access to quality, affordable healthcare.”

 There are approximately 19,000 uninsured children in Maine. More than 11,000 of these children are already eligible for MaineCare, but are not yet covered. “One of the most important aspects of the SCHIP bill is that Maine will have a guaranteed funding stream that will cover both the existing recipients and increased enrollment,” said Ana Hicks, Policy Analyst with Maine Equal Justice. “This will allow the state to reach out to the families who have children who are eligible but uninsured and make sure that they enroll in the program. “

The two million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the nation’s largest union of healthcare workers, recently launched “Change That Works,” a new state-by-state effort to bring economic relief to millions across the country, help fix the nation’s broken healthcare system and guarantee workers can freely decide whether to join with their coworkers in a union. The “Change That Works” campaign builds on the successful work that helped elect an unprecedented number of pro-working family candidates in November. More on “Change That Works” can be found at


With 2 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers—not just corporations and CEOs—benefit from today’s global economy.