Exactly one year ago, on March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan (ARP) into law to address the health and economic crises caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, this important legislation has been the cornerstone of the American COVID-19 recovery, providing funding for a national vaccination distribution and resources to local communities while reopening schools and creating measures to allow millions of Americans to safely get back to work.
The ARP was essential to making health care more affordable. It built on the strong foundation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by lowering premiums, expanding coverage, and increasing access to essential health services. It made health insurance more affordable and accessible, which is more important than ever as individuals deal with mental and physical health issues from COVID-19. These measures to increase affordability also reduced racial disparities in health care access.
President Biden’s ARP also included something else: a provision saving multiemployer pension plans from insolvency. Thanks to the ARP, ten million Americans will receive the pensions they earned.
“The Alliance provided information and resources so that decision makers and their advisers could solve our retirement security emergency, and that led to the provision of the American Rescue Plan that solved the pension crisis,” said President Roach.
“The Alliance and the AFL-CIO’s Retirement Security Working Group were instrumental in saving multiemployer pensions from insolvency,” President Roach continued. “Former AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka started the working group, coordinated by current AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler, by bringing together all the international union presidents to find a solution.”
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