May 23 2018 Portland Minutes

May 23, 2018, 7 PM>
Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church
524 Allen Avenue, Portland

1 – Present: Dan Bryant, chair, Audrey Briggs, Nancy Greenleaf, Delene Perley, David Wilcock, Elizabeth Oatley, Beth Franklin, Dee Cundy, Ed Cundy, Nancy Bogg, John Brewer

2 – Approved the April 25th minutes

3 – Board update: Dan summarized

*Sen. Gratwick reported that the Task Force was primarily focused on insurance and cost, and also about why other states have failed as well as the federal effort. The Task Force has also been presented with a hybrid trust model.

*The Board reviewed the status of the grant writing and the Stephen King grant received for 2 fiscal studies and the salary of the Executive Director for which position we have received 13 applicants.

*It’s likely that we’ll be able to rehire Chris Cayer and Abbie Ryder.

4 – Recent chapter actions/involvements

*Health Care Task Force – May 23: Dee, Ed, and John attended. They summarized the discussion of the 3 study groups: drug reimportation, other states, and financing. The thrust seems to be on improving/propping up rather than change. They seemed to agree that there needs to be government involvement to confront the reimportation safety issue.

*Candidates questionnaire: Dan reported. 89 questionnaires were sent and 43% returned, none of which were from Republicans. The Democrats all indicated various levels of support for universal health care. Results will be posted on the Maine AllCare web site and submitted to the Portland Press Herald opinion page. (Many thanks, Dan.)

*PPH Letters: We expressed thanks and praise to Hillary Barter and Nancy O’Hagan for recent letters about universal health care in other countries.

*Democratic Convention: Dee reported. She and Ed and Bill Clark and their teams collected about 400 signatures.

* Southern Maine Workers Center (HCHR partner): Audrey Briggs reported. She attended the recent HCHR meeting and said SMWCwould like us to endorse their Required Paid Sick Days proposal. We value their work and feel supportive but members were reluctant to endorse the campaign strongly as they felt it falls outside MAC’s specific mission. Dan will send out an informational email to chapter members, including SMWC’s position.

5 – Future actions/involvements/opportunities

*Democratic Gubernatorial Forum – June 7, 2018, 7:00-8:30, USM Hannaford Hall. Members were encouraged to attend.

*Healthcare-NOW! in Minneapolis Jun 22-24. Lynn Chaney, Julie Pease, and maybe Phil Caper will attend.

*Portland, Falmouth, and Wells Primary polls tabling – June 12. Dee led the discussion of the plans and the scheduling.

6 – Miscellaneous

*New Fix It films posted on MAC web site by Delene. Free to all to use!! ( There are two links there — one goes to the new movie: The other goes to all three movies: (#1 is on businesses, #2 is on Rx, #3 is on big money)

*Maine Medical Association newsletter cited MAC’s presence at the Task Force hearings. John Brewer will also mention it at the upcoming Osteopathic convention.

*Belfast Chapter event: Fabulously successful by all reports (including by Phil Caper). Delene suggested asking them to write it up to distribute to other chapters who might want to replicate it.

*The Economist of Apr. 28th was devoted largely to “Universal Health Care, Worldwide, Is Within Reach.”

The meeting adjourned at 8:30 to assemble packages of polling materials.

Next meeting – June 27, Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church, 524 Allen Ave, Portland, 7 PM

Respectfully submitted,

Elizabeth Oatley