Are NYC Teacher Retiree Health Plan Benefits in Jeopardy?

Now that I have your attention, the answer is no, although depending upon the network you selected there may be changes.

An explanation: New York City contracts with health care providers and provides our coverage, if you are over 65 Medicare kicks in; the cost to the city is many billions of dollars.

Health and prescription costs have been escalating at an alarming rate and during each negotiation period the city requires “savings” to keep the same level of benefits. The negotiations are 3-way, the MLC (Municipal Labor Coalition), the unions representing all active and retired employees, the City and a number of health care organizations competing to be the providers.

If you are a UFT member register here for a Town Hall with Michael Mulgrew tomorrow at 1 PM

Various folks have been stirring the pot predicting sharp reductions in benefits. While the unions may be divided on whom they’re endorsing for political offices they are together on providing the highest level of services to members; however, unions are democratic organizations and some factions within unions are critical of their union leadership.

One of the lead negotiators, on a lengthy Zoom (over an hour), explains the status of the negotiations (about a week ago) and answers over fifty questions, well worth a watch.  The presenter is the CSA Health and Welfare Fund Director.

 Keep in mind nothing was been decided at the time of the presentation … the two finalists have been selected…. it’s never over until it’s over and I cannot vouch for the accuracy of the presentation. 

The link is https://zoom.us/rec/share/xkSuXK-wUL3kf9hQRKepOyJFGQR3VnVGFigKykMo_FW5DB4e5sUf8mczmvhmdy7B.q2ksveNea3h_Zf82 Passcode: +QGtWUF6

If after listening to Mulgrew tomorrow and watching the Zoom presentation you have questions contact the UFT Retiree Chapter in you area, I know all of us want to be helpful, replies on Facebook may or not be accurate (“But I heard it on the Internet”).

We will be participating in the selection of the next mayor and city council on June 22nd, you can request an absentee ballot online https://vote.nyc/page/absentee-voting-0

On my morning bike ride the streets were busier; more empty Citibike racks, the Union Square Farmers Market vendors glad to see us back. We’re not out of the woods yet; obviously vaccinations, mask wearing, avoiding in-door cramped spaces, for me, next week a Mets day game.

Deep breathes, meditate, exercise, eat healthy, the days are getting longer and warmer.

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