For Immediate Release: September 9, 2009
Contact: Sandy Courtnage
Montana Farmers & Ranchers Travel to Washington, D.C.
GREAT FALLS, MT (Sept. 9, 2009) – The Montana Farmers Union (MFU) will send six members and staff to the National Farmers Union’s (NFU) fall Fly-In Sept. 13-16, in Washington, D.C.
“There are a number of issues on everyone’s mind right now,” said MFU President Alan Merrill. “We will talk to our Congressional delegation about legislation including climate change, health care, the TRADE Act, the dairy crisis, and the Renewable Electricity Standard.”
“Of these issues, health care personally affects most Montana Farmers Union members,” Merrill continued. “People in rural parts of the country are more uninsured and underinsured than elsewhere, with many farm and ranch families relying on policies with very high deductibles just because they don’t want to bet the farm that they won’t get sick.”
“Rural residents pay on average 40 percent of their health care costs out-of-pocket and 20 percent of insured farmers have medical debt. In fact, Montana and Iowa have the highest rate of uninsured farmers.”
“MFU policy is clear: we support a universal, single-payer comprehensive health care plan for all Americans. Considering the current conversations reported in the press, at the very least we want a single-payer option in order for any health care reform to actually be called reform.”
Joining President Merrill at the Fly-In are: Brett Dailey, MFU board, Jordan; Tim Franklin, KFBB reporter, Great Falls; Kelly and Kristie Rutledge, Big Sandy; and Jim Sargent, MFU Membership Director.