For Immediate Release
Contact: Adam Schank, Public Policy Fellow
44 Members of Congress Stand Up for Nonprofits
(Washington, DC; October 26, 2009) The National Council of Nonprofits and its network of state nonprofit associations applaud the decision of 44 members of Congress to stand up for the millions of people employed by America's nonprofits. Those 44 Representatives sent a letter Friday urging House leaders to include nonprofit employers in the final House health care reform bill. Unless Congress acts, millions of Americans employed by local nonprofits will be left without the protections that national health care reform will provide to employees of for-profit businesses.
The letter, signed by 44 members of Congress from 22 states, to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, underscored the fact that the vast majority of nonprofits are small employers experiencing the same unsustainable increases in insurance premiums that small for-profit businesses experience. The letter pointed out that "none of the current House bills extend reforms and benefits to the nonprofit sector. As written, the tax credit provisions included by the House to address the needs of small, for-profit business would not be available to small nonprofit employers."
Congresswoman McCollum (D-MN), a respected champion of nonprofits, explained her reason for initiating the letter and leading this effort to bring the nonprofit sector's the health care reform concerns to the attention of Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer: "The millions of Americans who work in the nonprofit sector must be included in health care reform. The nonprofit sector includes a wide range of small and midsize organizations, from food banks and homeless shelters to health clinics and domestic violence shelters, that are all working to improve life for families in our local communities. It's only fair that nonprofit organizations receive comparable treatment to the small business sector in health care reform legislation."
Tim Delaney, President & CEO of the National Council of Nonprofits, underscored Congresswoman McCollum's concerns: "Every dollar nonprofit employers pay in higher insurance premiums is another dollar taken away from delivering essential food, shelter, clothing, and other vital services that people need in this devastating economy. Individuals employed by nonprofits should not be penalized because they work for public good rather than private gain." Delaney added, "We hope that the White House will now step forward to join this growing chorus in the House and Senate who recognize that nonprofits are vital employers who cannot be left behind on health care reform."
Delaney indicated that the National Council of Nonprofits will continue to work with the broad coalition of nonprofits that has been working with the House and Senate to incorporate provisions in the health care reform bills that would treat small nonprofit employers and for-profit business employers with parity.
· Letter to Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer
· Additional background material
The National Council of Nonprofits links more than 22,000 member nonprofit organizations across the country through state nonprofit associations, helping small and midsize community-based nonprofits manage and lead more effectively, collaborate and exchange innovative solutions, engage in critical policy issues affecting the sector, and achieve greater impact in their communities.