Flurry of Announcements Has New York City Politics Abuzz

Faith Castro
January 13, 2019

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the launch of the largest plan in the nation to guarantee health care for every New Yorker.

Universal healthcare has become a rallying cry for liberal Democrats and an article of faith for numerous new representatives in Congress. Officials claimed that New York's scheme would be the most comprehensive free healthcare system in America.

Most people who work 40 hours a week in the city already receive paid vacation time, but about half a million - around 11 percent of the workforce - do not. At this point, there are more questions than answers, but one thing is certain-if successfully enacted, the mayor's paid time off proposal will significantly impact New York City employers. However, about 600,000 New Yorkers remain without insurance because they do not or cannot enroll, according to City Hall.

Under NYC Care, as the city's program is being called, uninsured New Yorkers will be able to call a central phone number to get an insurance card and be assigned a doctor, giving them access to primary care and an array of specialty services, the mayor said according to the Post.

Trump made reversing former president Barack Obama's health care law a key pledge of his campaign, and his Republican party successfully repealed in 2017 a key provision meant to keep overall costs down by ensuring healthy individuals bought insurance.

His wife, Chirlane McCray, who traces her roots to Barbados and St Lucia, said with the announcement New York City takes another leap ahead of the rest of the country in providing health services.

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All services will be affordable on a sliding scale.

The mandate would have to be passed by the City Council, a process that could take several months.

Almost half of the New York City workforce, or about 2 million workers, do not have employee-sponsored retirement plans, the mayor said at this State of the City. Since 2007, the for-profit school has paid NYC Health + Hospitals for the privilege of being the only worldwide medical school whose students do rotations in the city health care system.

The mayor plans to pursue legislation that would require private employers with five or more employees to provide employees with up to 10 days of paid time off per year. Part-time workers would fall under a mandate allowing them to accrue paid time off at a guaranteed minimum rate.

Here's what else de Blasio pledged to improve New York City at his 2019 State of the City address.

In the lead-up to his address, de Blasio introduced two new initiatives for his administration this year.

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