January 25 2018 Greater Brunswick Area Minutes

1/25/18 Minutes Greater Brunswick Area Chapter Maine AllCare

(formerly Midcoast)

5:30 – 7 PM, Unitarian Universalist Church, Brunswick, Maine

Present: Bill Clark, Jean Sawyer, Virginia Derr, Bill Eaton, Gail Eaton, Debbie Brisbois, Marla Davis, Rob Hoffman, Wendy Flaschner, Susan Kamin, Poppy Arford

Minutes: Jean Sawyer/ Bill Clark

Introductions made, agenda adjusted.

What a great meeting!! Attendees expressed excitement and enthusiasm for MAC and for our commitment to imagining and implementing Healthcare for all Mainers- perhaps our healthcare work could even lead the way to the Common Good of Justice and Equality for all!!

  1. We watched the 1.5 Animated minutes of the new 30’ MAC video- everyone approved, even cheered! Did not view the testimonials about care in other countries (no projector)
  2. Chapter name. Board suggests we change, perhaps to “Brunswick Area.” Extended discn. “Brunswick-Bath-Topsham” too cumbersome, and still “exclusive”. Geography- e.g. Merrymeeting or 7 Rivers, etc not uniformly liked. Bill to seek more detail/ advice from Board.
  3. Messaging: Bill read off the new version of Board’s Mission and Principles. People liked them and suggested no additions/ deletions.
  4. Important events: The 16-member Legislative Study group convened as a result of unanimous Insurance and Finance Committee passage of LD1274 met for second time on Jan 20, with time for public comment. (SG is charged with exploring options for covering all Mainers). 3 of our members (Wendy, Frederick, Bill) made comments- perhaps 20 comments altogether, including several from other MAC members and Board members. Before public comments, the 16-member SG focused on insurance issues, business, etc—basically buying in to the “commodity/ market” situation we are now in –boring for us “revolutionaries”, as we think tweaks (like the ACA) will inevitably fail to serve the Common Good of Justice and Equality.The Study Group takes comments again on FRIDAY March 2.  Please attend, and comment. Let’s car-poolMAC Board has submitted a $50K grant proposal to the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation for support in 2018, for growing our base of community support.MAC wants ideas for new Board members. Please make suggestions! (Bill Wood, MD is too busy; Moira O’Neill was appointed to a state Child Advocacy leadership job in NH, and Jonathan Fulford is running for CD 2 seat (Poloquin)).
  1. Chapter 2018 goals: Extended discussion. People are enthusiastic and want to build on the 25,000 individuals and 35 or so businesses/ organizations already supporting MAC. We want specific goals and metrics to go for, of course goals can always be changed. The below ideas are preliminary; and will be further discussed next mtg.
    1. Sign up endorsers, both businesses-30 and organizations-15. Churches less likely, but non-profits should be approached. Many businesses are not owned by the on-site managers. Bill suggested getting contact info for owners and following up- one successful example: Wilbur’s of Maine (Chocolate!). We agreed to think of new ones to approach and make a list next mtg. BTW, there is a new form– shorter and simpler- attached to this email
    2. Arrange events– like films and panels
      1. We will set a goal next time-see ACTION below
    3. Sign up individual supporters. People got excited about tabling at Farmer’s Markets, and will make more definite plans next meeting. Including for example “every Saturday in summer at X market”—we would need “chairpersons” to organize the dates and details. Plus the usual Fairs and public events.
    4. House Party. We had success with 3 of them, and will plan more- #’s to be determined.
  2. Coming Events:
    1. Our Healthcare is a Human Right Coalition Gubernatorial Candidate Forum February 1 Th,1 Gabriel Dr. Augusta, 6pm. 9 candidates accepted invitations.
      Come and ask a question- organizers will prepare Q’s!!
    2. Grace Episcopal/ Bath Feb 21. Jean, Marla, Bill, Virginia will plan details, the pastor wants it to be a community event and will put out publicity
    3. Bowdoin event (March?) in process, with 2 students in the Public Health club. 
  1. We reviewed a Healthcare NOW chart showing congressional levels of support for SP, from 1940’s to present. There have never been as many reps supporting (HR 676) -121 (all Dems) and 16 s Dem senators support Saunders’ bill.
    We are reminded that MAC is part of a growing national movement- we are a state chapter of PNHP, and at least 22 states are moving for state-based SP.  NY, CA are close. We are in touch with other states through a state coalition.

 Video links of interest:

    1. Now is the Time folks have a new 7 ‘ video featuring California SP work- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vVa5OMf1k58&feature=youtu.be
    2. 8’ on Canada’s HC system https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1TPr3h-UDA0 
    1. Bill, Virginia, Jean, Marla to plan Grace Episcopal event.
    2. Suggest businesses and non-profits from which we might seek endorsement
    3. Think about a tentative date, usually jointly with someone else, for a House Party
    4. Suggest churches or other venues (Rotaries, etc) with whom we might do an event- does not have to be a “Big Deal”- 15’ of their meeting is plenty to make a short presentation, give out handouts, sign up supporters and do brief Q&A

 Next meeting: Feb 22 Thursday 5:30, UUCB, 1 Middle St, Brunswick