Medicare’s 50th Birthday Bash

by Jonee Grassi

Thursday, July 30, 2015, will be the 50th anniversary of the signing of the MediCare Act by President Lyndon Johnson.   MediCare is the nation’s largest and most successful health insurance system serving the health needs of almost 50 million older and disabled Americans.  Therefore, there will be a National Day of Action for MediCare’s 50th birthday.

The theme of the celebration can be summarized by “P.I.E.”  protect it, improve it, and expand it.  A coalition of organizations has been formed to organize celebrations throughout the country.

In nortern California, a rally and march are being planned for Thursday, July 30th, 2015, at Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland, CA from 11a.m. to 2p.m.  The Plaza is near the 12th Street BART station.  Buses will be bringing many people from throughout northern California.  The event will begin at 11am with a rally, including booths, raffles, story boards, bands, etc. in the Plaza.

At noon, emcee Tom Ammiano will begin the program of speakers, including State Controller Betty Yee, Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, and others.  This will be followed by a short march to the Ron Dellums Federal Building.  Congresswoman Barbara Lee is scheduled tentatively to speak at this site.  There will be a drawing for the raffle and further birthday celebration before concluding at 2pm.

We need everyone to come to make this a successful event and show the continued support for the MediCare program.  The El Cerrito Democratic Club has endorsed this event and promised to mobilize its members to support it.  If you have any questions about the event, please feel free to contact Jonee Grassi at 510-681-6021 or