WASHINGTON, DC – Out2Enroll announced today the formation of an unprecedented nationwide coalition of over 60 national, state, and local LGBTQ and allied organizations committed to educating LGBTQ consumers about the health insurance options available under the Affordable Care Act from November 1st to December 15th.


The Affordable Care Act (or “Obamacare”) has provided financial stability to many LGBTQ people and families, helping our community access quality, affordable health insurance. “Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, the uninsured rate for low- and middle-income LGBTQ people has dropped by an overwhelming 35% since 2013. That means more LGBTQ people have access to medically necessary services they need, from life-saving HIV drugs to gender affirming health care,” said Katie Keith, Co-Founder of Out2Enroll.

Despite recent efforts in Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the law remains in place and open enrollment will begin again on November 1st. However, the Trump Administration continues to undermine and defund outreach and enrollment efforts, causing confusion for consumers across the country. In particular, the upcoming open enrollment period was cut in half from previous years—from 90 days to only 45 days—and will now end on December 15th. Those who miss this deadline may be locked out of health insurance until 2019. 


Added Mara Keisling, Executive Director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, “The Trump Administration is doing everything it can to make it far more difficult for people without health insurance to get health care. Even though we’re under attack, we’ve got to fight and educate people. LGBTQ people should still expect to be treated fairly and protected from discrimination in health insurance and health care—and transgender people should make sure they enroll in the health insurance they need for 2018.” 

“Healthcare is a vital aspect to sustaining the overall wellness of any community,” said David Johns, Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition. “Last year, 8 out of 10 applicants received a discount on their premiums and most found insurance for $50 to $100 per month. The ACA has made significant progress in reducing the uninsured rate of among the African American community, the LGBTQ community and among the entire American population.” 

Key partners in this nationwide coalition include CenterLink’s Center Action Network, Young Invincibles, The Health Initiative, and Equality Texas, along with state and local LGBTQ organizations in 28 states: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C., and Wisconsin. 

“National, state, and local partnership has never been more important to raise awareness about health insurance for LGBTQ people nationwide. If the Trump Administration won’t get the word out, then we will — online through social media and paid ads, in-person at LGBTQ community centers and events, and everywhere else that we can. It’s ‘all hands on deck’ this year and we need to make sure everyone knows their options and their rights,” said Gautam Raghavan of Out2Enroll and President Obama’s former White House liaison to the LGBTQ community. 

Launched in September 2013, Out2Enroll is a national initiative focused on connecting LGBTQ consumers with insurance coverage options available under the Affordable Care Act. For more information, visit www.out2enroll.org.

 

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