District Digest: Shutdown hits District health center, Congressional beer prices
Mary’s Center, the second-largest medical provider for low-income patients in the District, has not yet turned away a patient seeking treatment but is feeling the strain of the federal government shutdown. Half of the Center’s 30,000 patients are enrolled in Medicaid or D.C. Healthcare Alliance.
The Center was meant to receive $585,000 from D.C.’s Department of Health and the Department of Health Care Finances on October 1, reports Washington City Paper. But because of the shutdown, the money was never received.
Wayne Tunage, director of DHCF, sent a letter last week explaining that the DCHF “cannot access local funds in the District’s budget,” and therefore the government will suspend all Medicaid.
Mary’s Center chose to stay open despite the fact that, if the government shutdown continues until the start of the next pay period on October 18, employees will not be paid. It is also not guaranteed the Center will be retroactively paid for the services it provided even after the government is no longer shutdown.
“It’s absolutely unconscionable that this is happening to these immensely important organizations,” Pedro Ribeiro, Mayor Vincent Gray’s spokesperson, said. Unfortunately, there is little local government can do to help the center.
Redskins or Pigskins?
Members of New York’s Oneida Indian Nation tribe held a meeting Monday to discuss a potential change for the Washington Redskins’ team name, which they consider to be racist.
The meeting took place at Northwest Washington Hotel, the same place the National Football League owners hold annual fall meetings.
At the Monday meeting, D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton urged NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to address the issue of the “racially disparaging name,” reports ABC News.
Norton was among 10 Congress members to sign a letter sent to Goodell in May requesting a team name change.
President Obama spoke on this issue this weekend telling the Associated Press that he would change the name if he owned the team, seeing as it offends “a sizable group of people.”
NFL officials will meet with representatives of the Oneida Nation on November 22.
Shut it down in da club
Furloughed employees can buy beer for just $2. Congressmen are less lucky, as they have to pay $25, because according to Hadley, “they are still getting paid plenty.” The most expensive drink is priced at $702, and that is if President Obama decides to come in for a beer. Hadley’s reasoning is that he has to pay $700 for Obamacare, and the extra $2 “is for good measure.”
Photo: Céline Aussourd via Flickr.