The Health Justice Day of Action at Occupy Boston yesterday was a total success! Morning health services provided flu shots, blood pressure and diabetes screening, health referrals, and mental health support to Occupiers. Other Health Justice work group members provided teaching about hypothermia and trench foot, key areas of concern given the impending cold winter months.
At the speak out, people addressed various aspects health injustice, including occupational health and safety, the mental health consequences of war and inadequate services provided at VA hospitals, and the growing curtailment of women’s reproductive rights. We also got to hear about local health access and prevention projects, justice organizing by Massachusetts nurses, and organizing for a single payer universal health care system by physicians and community groups.
Afterwards, a group of about 300 complete with marching brass band, wound through downtown to the statehouse. On our way, we marched past Bank of America, whose housing foreclosures have produced devastating health consequences.
At our statehouse rally, we had speakers from the Massachusetts Nurses Association, the Vermont Citizen’s Campaign for Health, the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition who talked about the MA Transgender Equal Rights Bill, and from SEIU 615 about the proposed Massachusetts Paid Sick Days Act.
We followed this rally with a short walk to Senator John Kerry’s House, who is a member of the deficit reduction Super Committee which has a proposed $400 billion dollars in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. After leaving him a lump of coal for his Christmas stocking, and a rousing closing rally, we left the Grinch’s house to enjoy the rest of the sunny, autumn Saturday. See below for our action fact sheet and photos!