STORIES

Oscar Alarcon

“I’m an undocumented, queer Californian – or as I like to say, I’m an undocuqueer. Born in Mexico and raised in Stockton, I’ve spent years working in customer service – from restaurants to Home Depot – to support my education to become a fashion photographer.

But it’s not easy. See, my mother and I struggle from Type 1 diabetes, which largely goes unmanaged because we don’t have access to health care. We’ve benefited from a stranger’s generosity when a doctor offered my mother a necessary shot free of charge, but we shouldn’t have to depend on a random act of kindness. Too many people live in pain. Let’s change that. Let’s fight for #Health4All. It’s the right thing to do.”

recordnet.com

Imelda Ramirez

Sin dinero y sin seguro médico, mis padres no sabían a dónde acudir para recibir ayuda y siempre la desesperación les ganaba. Como su situación se empeoraba cada vez resultaba más difícil mantener la fe. Gracias a los programas de salud, como Medi-Cal y Medicare, mi madre pudo buscar tratamiento de increíbles especialistas en Los Ángeles, recibir gratuitamente medicamentos y herramientas de diálisis, y conseguir la salud y la esperanza  que ella (y el de nuestra familia) necesitaba desesperadamente.

Mi madre fue muy afortunada de tener acceso a servicios de salud asequibles, médicos, tratamientos y medicamentos. Desde que mi mamá puedo recibir el tratamiento necesario para curarse de los riñones, recibe tratamiento preventivo, ya no está obligada a sufrir y puede seguir teniendo acceso a su cuidado médico.

Creo firmemente que la capacidad de tener acceso a la salud médica es un derecho humano con el que nacemos y no es un privilegio (como algunos declaran). Todo el mundo merece la oportunidad de vivir una vida sana y ninguna vida es más valiosa que la otra.

hoylosangeles.com

Beatrice Sanches

“It’s been three years since I lost the most important person in my life.

My mother passed away from congestive heart failure in a nursing home in Oakland. She was only 55. I was seven years old when my mother wound up in the emergency room in a coma for two months before miraculously waking up. The doctors diagnosed her with type 2 diabetes, a disease that could have been prevented if caught earlier.

Running to and from the emergency room is no way to manage diabetes, but she was undocumented. If she’d had access to preventive services through affordable health care, regardless of her immigration status, my mother would still be with me today.

Unfortunately, my family’s story is not unique.

California also just adopted a state budget that opens up Medi-Cal to all children, regardless of their immigration status.

These are enormous steps in the fight for health for all, and it’s a fight most Californians already support. A recent Field Poll found a growing majority of California voters back the idea of expanding Medi-Cal access to undocumented immigrants.

Even with the recent steps taken to expand access to affordable, quality health care in California, more than a million people could still wind up like my mom because they continue to be locked out.

My mother’s death should not be in vain, and I won’t stop fighting until everyone gets access to health care.

No matter where you were born, we’re all human. And health care is a human right.”

postnewsgroup.com

David Xia-Zhu

“California ofrece muchas oportunidades a los inmigrantes para que accedan a servicios no disponibles en otros estados. Estoy muy agradecido de estas posibilidades y doy las gracias a aquellos que han trabajado intensamente para convertirlas en una realidad para mí y mi familia. Aún así, la pregunta sigue siendo la misma:¿en qué momento dejamos de valorar la vida de otros? ¿Mi salud, mi vida y mis contribuciones dejan de tener valor para el estado en el momento que cumplo 19 años? ¿Es mi salud, a los 17 años, más valiosa que la de mi madre, quien continúa sin tener acceso a la salud preventiva, a pesar de las preocupaciones por su salud a medida que envejece?

California debe hacer que todos sus residentes tengan acceso a la salud preventiva. Un servicio de salud pública estatal no solo mantendrá las enfermedades tratables alejadas de las salas de emergencia, sino que es también un asunto humano y es lo correcto. Ampliar la cobertura mé- dica a todos los californianos enviará un mensaje al resto del país: que nuestro estado reconoce el valor de la vida de cada ser humano.”

mercurynews.com

Angela Velazquez

“I was three when I came to the United States. I don’t remember when I realized that I was different. I had always considered myself an American. Growing up undocumented, I’ve experienced many exclusions, like not being able to obtain a driver’s license or financial aid for college. However, the worst exclusion of my life has been from health care. When I was 19, I aged out of my parents’ insurance. At 22, I was diagnosed with cancer. Of course I feared for my life, but at a time when most people discuss their treatment options with their doctor, I worried about how I would get treatment.

It occurred to me that I might have to leave the only home I’ve ever known and return to a country I don’t remember to get treated. I feared moving to a strange place away from family when I needed them most. Neither could I bear the thought of leaving my education unfinished. I have worked hard since I was 17, so that I could pay my own tuition and obtain a Political Science degree. I had and still have dreams of contributing to California by spending my life advocating for equality and improving the lives of the underrepresented. Leaving was not an option. Being undocumented, I have always been reminded that life isn’t fair, but I have never felt it more than I did then.”

capitolweekly.net