JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — It was an emotional day as people crowded the steps of the state capital building sharing personal experiences of their dependency on Medicaid.
Children took a front seat to the discussion as Oleta Fitzgerald shared how the GOP’s proposed cuts could negatively affect millions of kids in low income households.
“We’re very concerned that our state leaders and our national leaders are paying attention to the needs of 2.2 percent of Mississippians at the risk of hundreds of thousands of children’s of families in the state,” Oleta Fitzgerald, the Regional Director for Children’s Defense Fund said.
Kayla Roberts knows the consequences all too well. After turning 19, she says she was cut off of Medicaid.
“I have really bad asthma so that means every time I go to the hospital I have pneumonia no sickness no regular cough it’s pneumonia and it’s like life threatening because people die from pneumonia,” Kayla Roberts told me.
Roberts says she now has to move to another state so she can get the help she needs.
“I’m moving to Minnesota just so I can get Medicaid so I can afford the stuff that I need to save my life,” Roberts explained.
Today she’s here fighting for her sister who also suffers from Asthma.
“I don’t want her to go through what I had to go through without Medicaid and not affording her medicine,” Roberts says she feels like her voice isn’t being hear.
“To me they’re basically saying forget you the middle class or poor people you can’t afford this and that so suffer,” she continued.
Roberts and many others hope their legislators will hear their pleas and join them in the fight to save Medicaid.
“I am moving Monday but until then they gonna hear me they gonna hear me,” Robert said.
There have been hundreds of protests and sit ins across the country as people fight against the senate’s new healthcare bill. Republicans are still working to pass the cuts.