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"REMEMBER YOUR CHILDREN"
GENERlC ClTY COUNClL REMARKS

(SPEAKER COMES FORWARD TO LECTERN)

Good __________.

My name is (___________) and I am (___________) for Children's Medical Center of Dallas. We are pleased to be granted this opportunity to address the City Council about the health and well-being of children, who are the future of this city and this nation.

We also want to issue all of you a challenge and a special invitation.

Lately there has been a lot of talk about health care reform. Although national legislation has been tabled for this year, this critical issue won't go away. We expect health care reform to surface on the state level next year.

In the past, the health care debate too often failed to consider the special medical needs of children. As the future, children are the very people who arguably have the most at stake in any new health care system.

Today, more than 8 million children in the United States don't have any health insurance. That number continues to grow. Young people typically are the first casualites in the continued loss of private health care insurance. To save money, employers and families often are forced to cut dependent coverage first.

Children's Medical recently conducted a study of area families. We wanted to find out what local families know about their current health insurance. We also wanted to gauge their understanding of health care reform legislation.

The results highlight a clear and compelling need for more awareness and education about health care coverage, especially as it relates to children. The study also showed that Dallas area families do not feel they have the power to influence the course of health care reform. So they do little or nothing about it.

We want to change this. The mission of Children's Medical Center of Dallas is making life better for all of our nation's children. So we have teamed with other local community organizations to launch an educational campaign.

The goals of this grassroots effort are first, to rally parents and other concerned adults to make sure that health care coverage is "childfriendly." What do we mean? A "child-friendly" insurance plan guarantees secure health coverage for all children.

lnvesting in children's health care promises the best possible future returns. Today's healthy child will learn better and will grow up to be a more productive working adult for lots of brighter tomorrows.

Our second goal is to spread the word about what each of us can do to speak out for children in the health care debate. We want to empower families in the Dallas area to influence health care reform once the debate begins again.

This is where we extend our challenge and our invitation to you. We challenge each of you here today to educate yourselves in the special medical and health care needs of children. We will be glad to provide you with information on this topic.

And we invite you to join our community coalition as advocates for children. Please keep in mind the effect on young people of your decisions and actions, both public and private.

Working together we can make life better for all of our children.

(DISTRIBUTE BROCHURES)


 

 

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