When former Oregon-resident filmmakers Laurie Simons and Terry Sterrenberg began shooting Now is the Time- Healthcare for Everybody, they had no idea the U.S. healthcare system was about to be thrown into disarray by the new administration’s effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, potentially causing millions of Americans to lose their healthcare access. But the threat of impending major changes to the healthcare system makes their film even more timely.
Playing in a premiere Oregon tour February 18-23, Now is the Time- Healthcare for Everybody captures the drama of the growing nationwide movement to achieve the type of universal, publicly funded healthcare enjoyed by all the other advanced industrialized nations in the world. The film features interviews of national figures in the movement including Representative John Conyers of Michigan, author of HR 676, the Improved Medicare for All Act; Margaret Flowers, a physician activist who was arrested lobbying for universal health care at the Obamacare hearings; Deb Richter, a leader in Vermont’s effort to pass single-payer legislation; and Gerald Friedman, University of Massachusetts Amherst economist and author of state and national studies on financing universal health care. It explores the spectrum and recent history of the movement to provide health care for everyone.
But for Laurie and Terry, the film is also a personal journey. Facing the expense, complexity and frustrations of the U.S. healthcare system after having lived in Canada under its universal and comprehensive system (Laurie is Canadian, Terry from the US), they share details of Laurie’s bout with cancer treatment and Terry’s encounter with high emergency room expenses. The film is much more personal than their first film The Healthcare Movie, narrated by Kiefer Sutherland, which explored the 100-year history of advocacy for national healthcare in America. It also includes updates on many of the more than 25 state campaigns for single payer, including Oregon’s.
Now Is the Time: Health Care for Everybody will be screened and discussed (with speakers from Health Care for All Oregon and Physicians For a National Health Program) in the following cities:
Portland– Sat. Feb 18, 7 p.m., doors open 6:30, 1st Unitarian Church of Portland, Eliot Chapel, SW 12th and Salmon, Portland. Admission: $5-20, no one turned away for lack of funds. Contact David Delk, firstname.lastname@example.org, 503-232-5495
Eugene– Sun. Feb 19, Noon, Unitarian Universalist Church in Eugene, in Sanctuary, 1685 W 13th (west 13th and Chambers- parking off Chambers), Eugene. Admission: Free. Contacts: Pat Bitner email@example.com, 541-485-3971 or Kathy Filip firstname.lastname@example.org 248-891-9890
Corvallis- Mon Feb 20, 6 and 8:30 p.m., Darkside Cinema, 215 SW 4th St, Corvallis, Admission: Free (Donations accepted), Contact: Mike Huntington, email@example.com 541-829-1182
Salem– Tues Feb 21, 7 pm, doors open at 6:15 pm, Salem Progressive Film Series, Grand Theatre, 191 High St NE, Salem, Admission $5 Contact: Cindy Kimball, Salemprogressivefilmseries@gmail.com 503-385-1876
Beaverton– Weds Feb 22, 6-8 p.m., Beaverton Library Rm B, 12375 SW 5th St, Beaverton, Contact: Amanda Coulter: (503) 334-6203 firstname.lastname@example.org
Hillsboro– Thurs Feb 23, 6-8 p.m., Hillsboro Public Library, 2850 NE Brookwood Pkwy, Hillsboro, Contact: Jo Six: (302) 354-3003 email@example.com
Health Care for All Oregon is a coalition of more than 120 organizations supporting the HCAO mission: “To create a comprehensive, equitable, affordable, publicly funded, high quality, universal health care system serving everyone in Oregon and the United States.” Coalition members include businesses, advocacy organizations, unions, and political, religious and local community groups from around Oregon. HCAO manages a mailing list of some 20,000 advocates across the state of Oregon.