One of the benefits I have is working for the state is supposed to have better benefits and insurance. When I started working for the state, I never paid for anything.
Since Act 10 was sent through, I’ve lost pay and benefits. Last year when my husband and I both had health issues, I ended up with a couple thousand dollars of bills to pay. Not enough to itemize on my taxes but very much a burden on our budget. Now this year I went to the ER for a kidney stone. It was my first one so I had no idea what was going on.
I got the bill. Next time I’m staying home and not paying for all the crap. Again, I’ve been with the state since 2006. In that time we’ve had to make trips to the ER. This time I got a bill over and above my co-pay. The co-pay I believe was $75. The bill – was nearly $900. Then I had to do a follow up with a doctor. That cost me more money. The doctor wanted me to come back for a second visit. I set it up but really after I got the bills for the ER and doctor visits, I knew I could not afford another CT scan and doctor’s visit. I canceled both.
I pay over $200 a month for my husband and I to have insurance. Back when we were first together, we had insurance that was 80% /20% which meant for every medical thing the insurance paid 80% and we paid 20%. We had three little kids. Having this insurance drove us into bankruptcy because we had so many bills between the kids, my broken leg and three surgeries, and some of Ken’s stuff. Now I’m looking at the same situation with my supposedly better benefits.
I’m left thinking it’s better to stay home and cope with whatever the problems are rather than going to the doctor or to ER because the cost of it will drive us quickly into a place I don’t want to go. My choice is to have this crappy insurance which I’m paying for every month and not go for more than checkups. There’s now co-pays on everything. Beyond the co-pays, I’m getting bills for things the insurance isn’t covering. There’s no money in the budget for this. I’m still paying for last years medical bills.
It’s no wonder the state can’t fill positions. They’ve lost the edge of having better benefits and strong unions to protect the workers. Now the state has become a crappy employer where the benefits are sub standard and the pay is mediocre. It has become an employer who abuses their employees by calling them names and blaming them for the fiscal problems which are caused by mismanagement at the upper levels. It’s no wonder they can’t get guards for the prisons or keep faculty in the universities or keep clerical workers. Businesses are offering better everything with less abuse.
The politicians better wake up. They better start looking at the good of their employees or they won’t be able to run the state. I’d like to see the governor go into the prisons to be an officer or walk into a classroom and teach students. I’d like to see our legislators spend 40 hours a week doing clerical work or maintenance or janitorial. The politicians (on all levels) are great at looking out for them but they suck at looking out for the best interests of the people – which should be their biggest concern.
It’s time to wake up and remember that this is a collaborative affair. The politician govern at the will of the people. If they aren’t serving the people, they need to go. Whatever elections are out there, please go vote. Please voice your opinion and make yourself heard.