Writers Memo for Advocacy Speech
Overall, I think I’ve spent about 5 hours of out of class time on writing and preparing my speech for my presentation. I spent most of the time on the writing portion of it, since I was way too nervous to practice presenting, but I didn’t rehearse for about an hour before I did my final presentation. I tried to incorporate the persuasive proofs as much as I could, but I’m still trying to get use to how to use each of them properly. I think my speech relates to the audience as well as possible, I tried to include both sides, without being bias or seeming to force my ideas onto the audience. I think I used a little bit of both problem solution, and also refutation. I addressed the problem with healthcare and proposed a solution, but also refuted the idea that the problems with healthcare are the immigrant’s fault. I think the main claim and points are evident enough in the speech, I tried to stay on topic while also adding some other smaller points in. I think I could’ve done a lot better on my oral presentation, I used different levels of tone, but If I added a little more I think it would’ve been a lot better and smoother, I think my nerves definitely got the best of me.
November 25, 2018
Healthcare and Immigrants
Imagine, you’re a single parent, maybe you have two kids, or maybe you’re married with four or five young kids, you live in a small two-bedroom home and the only person in the household that works is you or your spouse. On top of paying the house, electrical, water, and air conditioning bills, you have to pay for healthcare for you, your spouse and your children. Now, you have to decide between healthcare, or food for your whole family for the week, would you be okay giving up a necessity for healthcare? that’s a reality for many families in America right now.
One of the main issues with healthcare is who is able to get covered and who isn’t. For some immigrants, it takes months or even years to get covered under programs like Medicaid. Many opt to even go back to their home countries to get treated by unlicensed doctors because it’s easier and cheaper. Now, some believe that if these immigrants would just get jobs, then they wouldn’t have to worry about healthcare. Yeah, most jobs do offer healthcare to their workers, but a lot of these companies are very bias, and hire based on race or sex and not on the skills of the person in question. There is also not only a huge pay gap when it comes to race and gender, but just discrimination in general within the work area and its only recently become more seen. Its already hard for US citizens to get jobs, especially without a college degree, now imagine how hard it is for someone who migrated here and probably doesn’t have access to higher education. With a basic high school education, the most that a worker can make is around $12 an hour, which when you think about it, isn’t a lot when you have stacks of bills to pay.
Now, how much do you think the average American makes a year? $30,000? Maybe even $40,000? Well, the annual earning for those working in service jobs, like fast food, construction, and stores, is an average of $28,028 (thebalancecareers.com). Now, with that $28,000, Healthcare probably isn’t on the top of everyone’s list when it comes to expenses. Many immigrants come to America already having had children, or families of their own. Expenses like food, water, housing, etc. are probably of higher priority than healthcare. Many even seek the help of strangers to pay for extensive hospital bills by using sites like GoFundMe or direct pay accounts like Venmo. Some in need of organ transplants even get taken off the donation list due to not having enough money to afford the transplant. Imagine needing an organ, like a lung, or even a heart, and after years of waiting for a match you’re unable to get the organ because you’re too poor to afford it. People are losing their lives solely because they don’t have $10,000 to afford their transplant.
Overall, $28,000 seems quite large, but when you consider that most of the population works 9-5 jobs, it comes out to be a lot lower than what some workers deserve. With the poverty levels at almost 40.6 million people in the US, healthcare needs to become more accessible for not only immigrants but everyone. When it comes to who suffers the most from poverty, Native American, Black, and Hispanic people have almost double the percentage of people in poverty compared to Whites (povertyusa.org). 1 in every 5 children are currently living in poverty, or in a low-income family. That means 1 in every 5 children have limited access to basic necessities, including healthcare. One of the larger groups effected by poverty are those with disabilities. In 2016, the poverty rate of people with disabilities was 21%, that’s almost 4 million people living in poverty with a type of disability. As someone who has a medical disability, knowing that such a large amount of people are going through what I’m going through, or worse, and can’t even afford the care they need, is extremely heartbreaking. I’ve only had my disability for almost 3 years, and the amount of medical bills I’ve had is well over a couple grand. For instance, one medication I’m on is called Humira, with insurance its only $5 for a pack of two shots, which is not bad at all for a medication, but without insurance is $6,000 for just two shots. This shot is the only thing between me and having to lose half of my intestines, without it I would suffer a hundred times more than I already do.
So, without insurance I can’t even fathom how hard it is for some people to handle their disabilities. Most of these people need healthcare to live, quite literally. Without it, many can’t get the basic help they need to handle their disability or medical issues. Do you know what the average cost for a hospital visit is? Without insurance it could cost thousands of dollars, and that’s before the ambulance fees, and food (if needed). My most recent hospital bill was well over $800 and that was WITH insurance, and I was only there for a few hours! With insurance, a basic copay for a hospital visit is $200, that’s almost three weeks of pay for some people.
Just like you and I, immigrants are living in America in hopes of having a safer, better life for not only themselves but their families. I can’t count on my hands and feet how many people I’ve met or seen who have parents who dropped everything they had in their home countries and risked their lives to come to America, just because they wanted a better life for their children. We’re all seeking one thing, many may say the “American Dream”, but really, we all just want happiness. You can’t have happiness when you have to worry about wither you and your kids will have health insurance or not.
What can we do to change this? well, one of the big things is to start treating everyone like humans, no matter their background, or social status. Blaming one group of people for issues that have been growing for years and years isn’t fair, especially when the people at blame are defenseless. Many people believe that giving immigrants easy healthcare will cause more problems or issues, but a lot of the time, immigrants don’t even try for healthcare because of the price of it, the long waits to be accepted, and the fact that nearly 41 million people are living in poverty in America, 23.4% of those being Hispanics. There is a larger issue at hand when it comes to healthcare, and we can’t point the blame on one group of people. People of all backgrounds are suffering healthcare wise, documented and undocumented, and we must do something about it. After all, America is supposed to be accepting of all, right?
Average Summary Information. 14 Aug. 2018
This article is pretty much a fact sheet on the average salaries for workers in the US. It goes into
depth about the pay gaps, and the averages between ages and races. It also provides salary
calculators for people who would like to find the average salary for their chosen occupation.
Pennza, Amy. “How much does individual health insurance cost?” People Keep, 14 Feb. 2017, www.peoplekeep.com/blog/bid/97380/faq-how-much-does-individual-health-insurance-cost.
In this article, Amy Pennza goes into depth about the average cost for a household to have
healthcare. She goes into the statistics of healthcare premiums and the differences between individual healthcare and group healthcare.