May Day: Medicare for All bill heard in Congress, May Day actions with ILWU, Oakland Sin Fronteras, and SEIU union leaders

0:08 – Congress held its first ever hearing on Medicare for All yesterday in the House Rules Committee. Washington Democrat Pramila Jayapal sponsored the legislation (H.R. 1384), which envisions a two year transition period during which the US would switch to a single payer system. It would provide comprehensive healthcare coverage including dental, vision, reproductive and mental health services at no cost. Ady Barkan, a 35 year old advocate in the final stages of ALS disease, and Dr Farzon Nahvi, a New York emergency room doctor was among those to testify before the Committee. Dr Nahvi told the committee about a woman suffering from appendicitis who walked out of the hospital and decided to take her chances with antibiotics because she can’t afford to be admitted. Another woman overdosed on fish antibiotic powder which she had purchased because she couldn’t afford human antibiotics. We speak with Stephanie Nakajima (@snarkajima), Director of Communications with Healthcare NOW, which advocates for a national, single-payer healthcare system.

0:34 – Today is May Day. From the archives, we bring you the history of this special day with Peter Linebaugh, retired history of history at the University of Toledo and the author of many books, including The Incomplete, True, Authentic and Wonderful History of May Day.

0:43 – May Day actions in the Bay Area:

ILWU, the Longshoreman’s union is leading a demonstration at the Port of Oakland protesting the Oakland A’s redevelopment. We speak with Clarence Thomas, longtime labor unionist, activist and longshoremen. He’s now retired from ILWU Local 10 (@ILWU).

1:08 – Sagnicthe Salazar is a Lead Organizer for Oakland Sin Fronteras (@OaklandMayDay), a coalition of grassroots organizations that organize the annual May Day march in Oakland and the Bay Area.

1:15 – Celeste Galeno is a family childcare provider with SEIU Local 521 (@SEIU521), and joins us to discuss the rally day at Sacramento to support several bills being introduced on families and childcare support.

1:34 – Rachel Lears is a documentary filmmaker. She holds a PhD in Cultural Anthropology and a graduate certificate in Culture and Media from NYU. Her new documentary Knock Down the House, screened at the San Francisco Film Festival this month. She visited us in KPFA studios and spoke to our intern Caitlin Hall (@CaitlinPlankton). Knock Down the House premieres today, May 1 in select theaters and on Netflix. 

1:56 – KPFA’s Richard Wolinsky reviews The Importance of Being Earnest playing at Aurora Theater in Berkeley through Sunday May 19.

May Day actions:

  • Oakland: 11am rally at Howard Terminal at Port of Oakland protesting Oakland A’s developing new stadium. ILWU-led
  • San Francisco: 4:00 to 5:00 pm — Opening Rally & March starting at Embarcadero Plaza (Market St. & Steuart St.) 5:00 to 6:30 pm — Rally & Speak Out at Civic Center Plaza (across from City Hall).
  • Concord: 5:00 pm – Gather at Meadow Homes Park, 6:15pm rally at  Todos Santos Plaza. May Day Rally & March for Tenant Rights and the Future of Concord
  • Sacramento: 12 noon Childcare providers rallying at State Capitol, Area 27 to push forward legislation that will allow them to negotiate with the State to strengthen early education for working families. (8:20 guest with SEIU Local 521)
  • KPFA Special Broadcast coverage: 2pm – 4pm live video broadcast from Oscar Grant Plaza. Watch the livestream here: https://iframe.dacast.com/b/53987/c/495409





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