ProtectSeniors.Org was formed by Jim Casey, a Verizon retiree and 9-year board member of the Association of BellTel Retirees, to concentrate on one issue: passage of legislation that will make it illegal for a corporation to take away the health benefits earned by their retirees, which were promised in lieu of salary or hourly wages, and vacations. The Association of BellTel Retirees provided a grant to help ProtectSeniors.Org get started.
Since retiree healthcare issues have been largely ignored by Congress, ProtectSeniors.Org has decided to lead the charge to see that the Earned Retiree Healthcare Benefits Protection Act (H.R. 1322 in the 112th Congress) gets passed. It is essential that protections, similar to those afforded by ERISA for pensions, be put in place to protect promised healthcare benefits.
At this time it is perfectly legal to steal retirees' earned healthcare benefits. How can that be true? Years ago, GM offered fully paid healthcare benefits to managers and their spouses for their entire lives if they would retire by a given date. Thousands took that offer, but a number of years later GM canceled those benefits. Outraged retirees filed a law suit (Sprague vs. GM) and won in a lower court. GM then appealed and won on appeal. Not to be denied, GM retirees took the case to the Supreme Court. It is hard to believe, but the Supreme Court refused to hear the case because they determined “the law has been upheld.” In essence, the Supreme Court says that it is legal to offer to someone a benefit in exchange for a certain action, then renege on the deal even when the action is completed.
Obviously the law is flawed and must be changed. That is why ProtectSeniors.Org was formed: to put a new law in place to protect retirees from this robbery of earned benefits which seriously jeopardizes their financial security.
Board of Directors and Staff
President: Jim Casey
Chairman of the Board: C. William Jones
Secretary/Treasurer: Eileen Lawrence
In addition to this all-volunteer Board, Paul Miller of Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies serves as the Executive Director and Chief Lobbyist for ProtectSeniors.Org.
Back row, left to right: Tom Butler, Butler Associates; Paul Miller, Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies; Bill Jones, Board Chairman; Jack Cohen
Front row, left to right: Inesha Singh; Eileen Lawrence, Treasurer/Secretary; Laura Howard, Consultant, Grassroots & Communications; Jim Casey, Founder and President