Not a drop of rain throughout yesterday’s great Rally for a Strong Public Option in Mineola! . . . Our Health Care and Insurance Reform Committee held its first official rally turning out one hundred fifty inspired supporters, signing up two dozen new members, raising money for its next endeavor, and most important, keeping the fires burning for a robust public option. To this end signatures were added to petitions calling upon elected officials to aggressively promote a strong Public Option. The inspiring speakers and chants provided an inspirational opportunity to let our collective voice be heard.
Ina shares that a father with his two young sons, no older than six and eight years, came to one of our sign-up tables. He signed the petition and completed a post card that would be sent to his representatives asking for healthcare reform support. He became a member of YWCLI and when asked by his sons why he was becoming a member he told them that about the good that YWCLI has been doing on behalf of Long Island. This father went on to explain to them why it was important to be at the rally. That these children might grow up with an appreciation of standing up for what is important was inspirational to me.
I am taking this opportunity to extend my gratitude and appreciation to the Board of YWC!LI who worked hard to make this rally a success. Clearly our organization with the support of Committee leaders and volunteers is influencing the political environment throughout our communities. It is especially rewarding to work with our community organizer Bob Young who attends to all the details and particulars so necessary to a successful event.
Also thank you to each of the speakers who enthusiastically joined our effort and added greater value to the event (in no particular order): Lisa Tyson (LIPC), Geoff Berman (OFA), Martha Livingston (PNHP), David Denenberg (Nassau Count Legislator), Wayne Hall (Mayor, Hempstead), Carrie Solages (Commissioner, Commission on Human Rights, Nassau County), Jon Cooper (Suffolk County Legislator), and Joan Tobiason (for sharing her story).
We are grateful for the support of the following individuals and groups: First, to our co-sponsor, the Long Island Progressive Coalition and to Organizing for America. Also we appreciate the support of: Tom Suozzi (Nassau County Executive); the Communications Workers of America-Local 1104; Jerrold Nadler (Congressman, 8th Congressional District); the League of Women Voters; Charles Lavine (New York State Assemblyman, 13th Assembly District); Susan Hornik (grassroots leader, CD-1); Long Islanders for Change (CD-2), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY Senator); Mid-Suffolk National Organization for Women; Bellmore Merrick Democratic Club; Baldwin Democratic Club; Mid-Nassau Democratic Club; Five Towns Democratic Club; Central Dems 4 Brookhaven; Brookhaven Rosa Parks Democratic Association; Southeastern Brookhaven Democratic Club; Glenn Stephenson, (candidate for Nassau County Legislature).