CSSA to Bring Students’ Insurance Concerns to Washington, D.C.

Samantha Tata

The A.S. Senate heard a special presentation Tuesday from the California State Student Association (CSSA) that addressed the statewide student government organization’s plans for health care reform on campuses.

Christopher Chavez, president of CSSA and CSU Long Beach student, said the Obama administration’s health care reform bill will have significant impact on those students who are insured through their university.

“Much of how campuses run their health care does not fit the definitions in the new bill,” said Chavez.

The reform bill, which will not take effect at the college level until 2014, stipulates that only employers are allowed to provide the kind of subsidized health care rates that college campuses offer.

“There is also a long term requirement,” said Chavez.  “We provide short term health care, students graduate and situations change.”

Chavez said CSSA will work with the federal government and the Department of Health to change the definitions in the bill as it applies to students.

“Although the changes do not go into effect for three years, we need to start now if we want to get anything done,” he said.

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A.S. approved the dual standing of two senate members who are also employed by Associated Students.

Senators Amanda Flavin for Business and Economics, seat I, and Christine Tchalikian for Health and Human Development, seat II, have been approved to continue their employment while serving on the voting board.

A.S. General Manager David Crandall said the change in policy is routine and usually happens about once a year.

“The senators are expected to abstain from voting on any financial or compensation matters that include their employers,”  said Crandall.

Flavin works for A.S. Recreation Sports, Tchalikian works for The Fitness Centre.