Laborers Reactions to Affordable Health Care Act Enrollment (NBC33 VIDEO)

By Eric DeFreeuw - NBC33

September 2, 2013 Updated Sep 2, 2013 at 9:07 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.nbc33.com) – While out at the annual Labor Day Picnic at Headwaters Park on Monday, a number of people spoke of the impact labor issues may have on both employers and their fellow workers. One of the biggest topics was the Affordable Care Act (also known as “ObamaCare”).

Effective October 1, workers will be able to enroll in the highly discussed program. While some workers spoke of the benefits of the health care plan, others say it could be the end of employer-issued benefits like health insurance.

One such worker, Casey Hofmann with the Ironworkers Local 147, says that would not necessarily be a bad thing.

"I'm one that doesn't think an employer should have to pay your insurance to tell you the truth. I'm all for single-payer. I don't believe employers should have to compete against people from Europe or Canada and have to be one of their expenditures when companies in other countries don't have that."

As one labor leader points out, it all depends on the specifics of the bill and how it is enacted.

"How this is implemented is still up in the air,” points out Tom Lewandowski, President of the Northeast Indiana Central Labor Council. “We just have to make sure that we're heard in the process. This can't be left to government and employers to decide. Regular folks have to have a voice in this. If we don't have a voice in it, it will surely fail."

Other workers stressed the importance of education. They felt once the specifics of the bill are established, they felt they just need to find a way to make it work.




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