On May 1, 2011 thousands rallied for health care as a human right in Montpelier, Vermont.
For three years a grassroots movement for universal healthcare has been building in Vermont thanks to the Vermont Workers Center. On March 24, the house passed H202, a bill that puts Vermont on the road to having universal healthcare.
Yet before the activists could celebrate the consideration of universal healthcare in Vermont, they had to contend with a last minute amendment that would have made the bill less than universal; the Brock-Sears amendment would explicitly exclude undocumented workers.
The day after this May 1 rally the Brock-Sears Amendment was struck down in conference committee. The committee was responding specifically to grassroots pressure from healthcare activists who called, wrote, marched, rallied and spent days at the statehouse talking to lawmakers. This is democracy in action, and proves that grassroots organizing works.
Also see this report: Vermonters Restore Universality to Health Care Bill
Sam Mayfield is a videographer, editor and documentarian. Her video stories have appeared on Grit TV, on Democracy Now!, MSNBC, in the Nation magazine, Alternet, Z-Magazine, and the Progressive. She is based in Burlington, VT. For more information visit her blog: http://samville.blogspot.com/