HCAN and other pro-reform groups plan more demonstrations this month. On Oct. 5 and 6, HCAN activists will protest at insurance company offices in at least sixty cities. In mid-October, MoveOn.Org, an HCAN partner, is planning to demonstrate at Senators’ offices to coincide with the latest campaign contribution filings. HCAN also intends to confront CIGNA’s Hanley, UnitedHealth’s Hemsley, WellPoint’s Braly and their counterparts at other major insurers at the annual meeting later this month of America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s lobby group. On October 29, HCAN and its local affiliates will be trick-or-treating in the neighborhoods of industry CEOs and board members.
As in previous protests, HCAN plans to bring clergy, doctors, nurses, victims of insurance industry neglect and their families, as well as members from unions, religious congregations, community and consumer groups, MoveOn, and other groups.
Some demonstrators may engage in civil disobedience. HCAN forswears anything raucous, disruptive, or violent. But they worry that editors and reporters won’t deem their peaceful protests newsworthy.
Meanwhile, during the first half of this year, the insurance and HMO industry increased its lobbying expenditures and campaign contributions to some $700,000 a day. You won’t find their CEOs manufacturing news by taking to the streets.
Correction: This article originally stated that The Philadelphia Inquirer did not cover the CIGNA/HCAN rally on September 22. In fact, a brief on the rally ran in the Inquirer’s business section the next day.