2021 United We Matter Annual Meeting

Great Meeting, Great Response.  Wish you were there......

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From Left to Right:  Delegate Lauren Arikan, Ken Fitch, President United We Matter, Delegate Joe Boteler, and Delegate Dan Cox. 

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2021 United We Matter Annual Meeting Recap

Well we finally did it.  Had another annual meeting.  Due to Covid we could not hold a meeting in 2020, so this meeting was two years in the making.  Due to Covid seating was limited.  The space normally holds 200 but we limited it to 100 because of social distancing concerns making this meeting more intimate and more conversational.    We outlined our plans for the 2022 since it is an election year.  The lawyer went over the status of the lawsuit and the attorney updated the audience on the contributions of State retirees and the costs of the lawsuit.  The afternoon meeting had Delegate Lauren Arikan, Delegate Joe Boteler and Delegate Dan Cox.

 

If you remember Delegate Arikan she was one of only four lawmakers who voted against SB946. She outlined what needs to be done to turn around the leadership to our cause.  Essentially, she advocated consistent, persistent, and determined pressure.  She praised our actions (especially the car rallies) and said that that was the type of action we needed to get what we want.

 

Delegate Boteler appeared at the 2019 Annual meeting.  He announced that he would be submitting a new bill in the House of Delegates to reinstate the prescription drug coverage. WOW. He will be filing that bill early, so we will have a bill number by January 2022.  He advised us to continue the fight.  If you remember, Delegate Boteler submitted a bill to reinstate our RX coverage in the 2020 session, but the bill never came out of committee thanks to Delegate Maggie McIntosh.  He also asked each member to contact their lawmaker (Delegate and Senator) and ask them if they support reinstatement of your benefit.  If the answer is yes, then ask them to co-sponsor Delegate Boteler’s bill.  This will be a true test of whether they are for reinstatement or not.  This should figure greatly in whether you will support their effort to get re-elected.

 

The kicker was Delegate Dan Cox (currently running for Governor) who announced to the room that if elected he would sign an executive order to reinstate the coverage and seek any legal remedies necessary to keep it in place.  If you remember Delegate Cox submitted a bill to reinstate our RX drug coverage in 2019, that was again held in committee by Delegate Maggie McIntosh, chair of the Appropriations Committee.

 

 I cannot remind you enough to support the lawmakers who are supporting our fight.  Each praised our ads, rallies and protests.  Each said that we must keep it up, especially now in an election year.  Well, this meeting is just a first step to amp up our battle in 2022.  After almost 4 years we are serious and lawmakers should be concerned.  Don’t mess with old people. We are not going to take this anymore and we are not going away. 

 

Yup.  It was a good meeting.

Ken Fitch