The Desert Sun, Palm Springs, California
Letters to the editor for Sunday, July 27, 2003
As a registered nurse, mother and grandmother who has worked for more than 30 years in the Coachella Valley, I believe that health care for children is imperative and should be a benefit if an employer can afford to pay the premiums. There is no doubt in my mind that the casinos can well afford to pay the cost of employees' dependent health care. They only pay for employees. Not having health insurance leads to the use of hospital emergency rooms and urgent care centers -- which is more expensive -- or no health care for children .
Non-Indian businesses pay their full share of taxes to fund Medi-Cal, AIM and Healthy Families programs. Casinos do not contribute to these welfare programs but instead keep their huge profits to build bigger and more profitable casinos and hotels.
With the push to improve school test scores, how can we expect sick children to perform and learn in school?
Employees who work full-time should either be paid enough to afford health insurance premiums or casinos should include dependent health insurance as a benefit. When children of casino workers are kept healthy, the entire community benefits.
Esther Crayton, R.N.