Michael Mulgrew's favorite arbitrator, Martin Scheinman, has released a recommendation saying the City and Municipal Labor Committee can move forward with a privatized Medicare Advantage plan for Medicare eligible retirees. For profit Aetna will get the business.
Scheinman threatens premiums and no healthcare options if we don't agree to Mulgrewcare (Medicare Advantage) in 25 days and we would also have to change Administative Code 12-126 to most likely lower the benchmark rate the City has to pay for health care.
Scheinman is not an independent arbitrator here. He has been chairing the Tripartite City-MLC commission on healthcare. How does he have jurisdiction in this matter as the City and union leaders are basically in agreement?
There needs to be someone who will attempt to resolve a dispute between the City-MLC vs tens of thousands of retirees who want to keep the traditional public Medicare supplemented by GHI Senior Care. Scheinman is basically a scribe for the City-MLC, not an independent arbitrator.
Statement from NYC Retiree Organization
For Immediate Release – Thursday, December 15, 2022
NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees Statement on Arbitrator’s Decision
Mr. Scheinman is voicing the interests of the City and the MLC, neither of whom represent the interests of retirees. Retirees were not part of the arbitration process. But if the City seeks to violate Retirees’ rights again, Retirees will once again have to seek judicial intervention to protect their healthcare rights. Mr. Scheinman himself states, “ implementation was delayed by a lawsuit filed by a small group of unaffiliated retirees.” Since he admits we are unaffiliated, he should not be making decisions for us. Grandfather current retirees in the benefit arrangements we earned and paid for during our years of collective bargaining and accepting reduced wages and benefits to maintain. This frees the current unions to negotiate their own benefit changes for those affiliated with them. Unions are supposed to protect retired labor. Sadly those days are over.
The MLC has argued for over a year that section 12-126 does not require the City to fund all plans, and that Medicare Advantage is just as good as Medicare. Six Supreme Court justices unanimously held that the MLC was wrong on the law, and a slew of reports proves that the MLC and Mr. Scheinman are wrong about Medicare Advantage. If they had any sense of shame, they would not steal from senior citizens, disabled retirees and first responders to save themselves from the UFT using $1 Billion from the Health Insurance Stabilization Fund to pay for raises and other misuse.
We built this City and our former unions. We rebuilt this City after 9/11. Grandfather us, or use our suggestions to find savings including allowing us to assist you in leading the nation in developing a Medigap plan we WANT, and get it federally funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation. The MLC needs to think outside the box, and stop boxing us into their schemes.
NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees
FDNY EMS Retirees Association