Today, I’m joining a roundtable discussion at the Service Employees International Union about health insurance and the arts. Pretty psyched about the rest of the panel. Here’s the media advisory:
In 2005, J Dilla was an influential hip-hop producer and rising artist whose promising life was cut short by complications stemming from his battle with Lupus. Without health insurance, the costs associated with his care reached triple digits. In the United States, 60 percent of uninsured Americans are self-employed or employed by a small business that does not offer health benefits.
This Wednesday, SEIU is hosting a discussion at our headquarters on how health care reform can prevent the kind of financial stress and hardship J Dilla’s loved ones — the Yancey family — have endured due to the high cost of medical treatment.
WHO: Mr. Malik “Phife Dawg” Taylor, member of A Tribe Called Quest & Diabetes patient; Ms. Maureen “Ma Dukes” Yancey, J Dilla’s mother; Dr. L Toni Lewis, President of Committee of Interns & Residents/SEIU; Reverend Lennox Yearwood, Hip Hop Caucus; Casey-Rae Hunter, Future of Music Coalition
WHAT: Roundtable discussion about health care reform and its implications for individuals in the arts and beyond.
WHERE: SEIU International Headquarters
1800 Massachusetts Ave
Washington, DC 20036
WHEN: Wednesday, July 8th 1 – 2 PM
If you’re interested in attending, please contact [email protected]
Presented by SEIU, LFAGW & Hedrush Entertainment, the 4th Annual J Dilla Tribute & Fundraiser will take place that same night at Liv Niteclub in Washington, DC at 9pm. This is a free event, but donations are encouraged. To RSVP, visit http://dilladc09.eventbrite.com/.
My org, Future of Music Coalition has a FREE program called the Health Insurance Navigation Tool, or HINT, which lets musicians schedule (via the HINT site) a one-on-one, confidential phone consultation with a health insurance expert who is also a musician. HINT doesn’t sell or offer insurance; it’s a free information resource for musicians seeking high-quality, artist-friendly information about an often confusing topic. We hope that by helping musicians understand their options on a case-by-case, state-by-state basis, they can make better-informed choices about obtaining coverage. It’s not a silver-bullet solution, but it is a great program. (And free — did I mention it’s free?)
In other news, I’m delighted that FMC’s new website is just about to go live next week(ish). Back later. . .