U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown held a local round table discussion Monday morning in Steubenville to help retired Ohio coal miners fight their possible loss of healthcare coverage.
He, along with others, re-introduced the Miners Protection Act back in January to help address the pension shortfall and to make healthcare coverage permanent, but all coverage for miners might be lost at the end of April.
For weeks, retired miners and widows have been receiving letters saying that their healthcare coverage will soon end. Which is why U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown and others are trying to do something about it.
“For Congress to turn its back over and over and send these notices out and create that kind of anxiety and fear is morally reprehensible, especially when you consider that congress men and women and senators have insurance paid by taxpayers,” said Brown.
Studies show that coal miners suffer severe health issues because of the conditions they once worked in, which is why the old promise for miners to receive retirement security and health benefits is still important today.
“We keep our promises and that’s what we do. I was a, you know, I’m Vietnam Veteran and I promised my country this is what I would do. I didn’t have any problem keeping my promise. We just want those guys to keep their promises also,” stated retired United Mine worker Dave Dilly.
Officials have been fighting for almost four years over this issue. Senator Brown said he’s not just working for a four month extension, but rather to make healthcare coverage permanent.