03-29-2001

01NR11 - END THE DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH CARE!

Washington DC … March 26, 2001 You can safeguard your right to health care
in case of accidental injury by calling your Congressman today!

The Motorcycle Riders Foundation encourages you to urge your U.S.
Representative to sign a letter that encourages Health & Human Services
Secretary Tommy Thompson to safeguard motorcyclists from being
discriminated against by employer health care plans.

U.S. Representative Mark Green of Wisconsin authored and is circulating the
letter, at the urging of the American Motorcyclist Association. With
enough co-signers, the letter will convey to Secretary Thompson that he has
the strong backing of Congress to work to reverse the interim final rule,
promulgated by the Clinton Administration, for the “non-discrimination”
provisions of the Health Care Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Thus far, these champions of your rights and safety have signed the letter
by Congressman Mark Green: U.S. Reps. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Thomas
Barrett (D-WI), John Shimkus (R-IL), Don Manzullo (R-IL), Rod Blagojevich
(D-IL), Timothy Johnson (R-IL), Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Thomas Petri (R-WI)
and Mike Rogers (R-MI).

If your Congressman appears on this list, call him to thank him (202) 224-3121.

If not, call today, as your Congressman’s name belongs on the Green letter.

Here are the facts:
HIPAA contains language that prohibits health care benefit
discrimination against employees who happen to own and use motorcycles.
Senate floor exchange between Senators Moseley-Braun and Kassebaum
on 18 April 1996 confirmed that this language was “intended to ensure that,
among other things, participants and beneficiaries are not excluded from
health care coverage because they participate in activities such as
motorcycling…”
That language and that understanding became law in 1996 when 421
Congressmen and 98 U.S. Senators voted to pass HIPAA.
The regulators who wrote the rule on HIPAA, however, narrowly
interpreted the word “participation” in a way that legalizes the denial of
health benefits to motorcyclists who sustain an injury while riding. That
narrow interpretation is wrong and directly contrary to Congressional intent.

Here’s what to do:
1. Telephone your U.S. Representative at (202) 224-3121 now [or reach
your Congressman via e-mail. (See “thomas.gov” for a directory of addresses.)]
2. Explain the situation and urge your U.S. Representative to sign the
“Dear Colleague” letter authored by Congressman Mark Green of Wisconsin.
3. Pass this MRF RIDERS’ ALERT along to 3 other riders and encourage
them to do the same.
- MRF: My Ride is Freedom -

The first motorcyclists' rights organization to establish a full-time legislative advocacy presence in Washington. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation is the only Washington voice devoted exclusively to the street rider. MRF established MRFPAC in the early 1990s to advocate the election of candidates who would champion the cause of rider safety and rider freedom. MRF proudly claims state motorcyclists' rights organizations and the very founders of the American rider rights movement among its leading members. Motorcyclists worldwide can thumb-start their search for rider rights and safety on the web at www.mrf.org.

All information contained in this release is copyrighted. Reproduction permitted with attribution. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation, incorporated in 1987, is an independent, membership-based national motorcyclists' rights organization headquartered in Washington D.C. which operates in co-partnership with State Motorcyclists' Rights Organizations nationwide. The MRF is involved in federal and state legislation and regulation, motorcycling safety education, training, licensing and public awareness. The MRF provides individual and SMRO member-volunteers with guidance, support and information to protect motorcyclists' rights and advance motorcycling and its associated lifestyle. The MRF sponsors annual regional and national educational seminars for motorcyclists' rights activists and publishes a bi-monthly newsletter, THE MRF REPORTS.

Voice: 202-546-0983, Fax: 202-546-0986, E-Mail: wyld@mrf.org, website: http://www.mrf.org


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