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STATEMENT BY OFFICE AND PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES INTERNATIONAL UNION PRESIDENT RICHARD LANIGAN IN OPPOSITION TO NEW JERSEY’S S-4 HORIZON RESTRUCTURING LEGISLATION

On behalf of the 1,000 OPEIU Local 32-represented employees at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, OPEIU strongly opposes S-4 that seeks to impose restructuring requirements forcing the company to become an “insurer of last resort,” a move that would have devastating financial repercussions for the company and translate to exploding premiums and fewer services for its 3.8 million subscribers.

This onerous and politically motivated move by Gov. Chris Christie and the state senate will also hurt the innocent employees of Horizon who will as a result face certain layoffs and deep cuts at the bargaining table. Forcing Horizon into a quasi-charitable role that only it has to bear would put it at a serious disadvantage to other insurers in the state. More importantly, its employees and premium holders would be the ones absorbing the cost of caring for non-policy holders.

Our hardworking members shouldn’t have to serve as unfortunate pawns in Christie’s political game of financial chess. Creating unfair competition is not the way around the state’s fiscal crisis or the path to funding state programs that work for everyone in the state of New Jersey.

Gov. Christie’s legacy in New Jersey is set. No amount of financial trickery is going to change that.



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Office and Professional Employees International Union was chartered in 1945 and with more than 104,000 members (representing 110,000 employees) strong, we’re one of the larger unions of the AFL-CIO.  OPEIU has locals in every state, Puerto Rico and Canada. 

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