The ACA is Under Attack

The House of Representatives is considering a proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act with a plan that will result in millions of Americans losing their health insurance. We know this is a scary prospect and very complicated to understand, but here are a few key points:

  • The plan will be particularly harmful to older health consumers and the poor.
  • The bill will force people to pay much, much more for, high-deductible insurance and blows a huge hole in state budgets.
  • It gives massive tax cuts to the very wealthy and drug and insurance corporations. It also defunds Planned Parenthood.
  • The Republican bill ends Medicaid expansion and slashes state funding for the regular Medicaid program by radically changing the way Medicaid is funded.
  • States will be forced to end coverage and eliminate health care services for seniors, people with disabilities, children and working families.

The House Ways and Means Committee has already approved this plan and Congressman Dave Reichert voted yes. 

We need to press against this! 

Please call Congressman Dave Reichert’s office and ask him to vote against the bill to replace the ACA. Reichert’s office phone in Issaquah is (877) 920-9208 and (202) 225-7761 in DC. (It helps to call both offices.)

We want to know how you’re feeling about this proposed bill. Tell us more here.

Where Is Your Heart?

We rallied outside Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ headquarters in Spokane on Monday, February 13th, to demand that she stand up to her peers and protect health care. We asked her WHERE IS YOUR HEART and tried to speak with her and tell her our stories of people who NEED their health care.

We prepared special presents for her — stuffed animals, each with a name and a story attached of an actual person who needs their health care. But, she was not there to hear from her constituents.

Rep. McMorris Rodgers and other Republican leaders are pushing to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would leave thousands in her district without the quality, affordable health care they deserve. #SaveTheACA

Deposit Reform Takes Effect

What you need to know:

  • Landlords will have to accept payment plans for the upfront costs to moving into a rental (security deposit, last month’s rent and non-refundable fees)
  • Payment plans are based off the length of the lease, and for leases six months or longer, the tenant payment plan can pay these fees and last month’s rent in installments in as many as six equal monthly installments. Renters can request a longer repayment plan with a landlord’s agreement.
  • The total cost of the security deposit and nonrefundable fees must not exceed one month’s rent, with the exception of a pet deposit
  • Pet deposits may not be more than 25% of your rent for one month and no other pet fees can be charged

The Seattle Department of Construction and Inspection will enforce this legislation and landlords who repeatedly violate it will face civil penalties. Call their help line to report violations (206) 615-0808.

We want to hear from you! Will you benefit from this legislation? Have you had trouble finding affordable housing in Seattle in the past? Click this link to tell us more.

Good Food Bag

Photo courtesy Seattle Tilth

The Good Food Bag program is working to address some of the barriers that communities experience in accessing food, and in just 14 weeks a total of 437 bags were distributed to 180 different homes! Many families were able to pick-up a Good Food Bag during their weekly routine, increasing access to a variety of nutrient-dense organic fruits and vegetables. And all Good Food Bag recipients were able to support local farmers in east Auburn at the Seattle Tilth Farm Works.

At our distribution sites, we saw individuals try produce they had never seen before, like the knobby purple vegetable kohlrabi. We had folks express excitement at the weekly recipes which provided an inventive and simple way to cook some of the produce that was in the weekly bag. And we even saw many people pay it forward – generous individuals who admitted that although they struggled to buy quality food for themselves, they still knew someone else who had it worse and so they wanted to make sure everyone who needed a Good Food Bag had access to one.

As we prepare for the 2017 program, we want to ensure the Good Food Bag is even more accessible by opening new distribution sites in areas of Auburn that are hard to reach. We want to continue partnering with local farmers who are growing top quality, organic produce. And we want to continue growing in community in this collaborative program that helps decrease food insecurity in Auburn. Stay tuned until June 2017, when this program will start back up again, and please let us know if you are interested in volunteering or being part of this program in the future!