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Mill Workers Losing Health Insurance

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SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Workers from the Springfield Plywood and Veneer Mill are concerned about what’s next.

On Monday, they were informed their health insurance is only good through the end of the month.

Mill workers said the meeting certainly answered some of their questions but losing their health insurance at the end of July is adding to their worries over not having a job.
Employees say many of them can’t afford health insurance otherwise. Insurance agents say there are various options out there for people to take a look at while they’re in between jobs.

Those options include COBRA, different private carriers, or Cover Oregon.

“They can go to the Cover Oregon website. They can talk to an agent who can help get them in that situation and then see what they qualify for, see what kind of benefits they qualify for, and hopefully it’s enough to at least protect them and their family,” said Ryan Hoffstot, a local insurance agent.

Hoffstot says he recommends employees getting some sort of insurance in between jobs.

An employee who spoke to KEZI 9 News said they are having one on one meetings with management this week and hope to have more questions answered.

4 comments

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  1. Me says:

    There lucky, McKenzie Willamette killed all insurance immediatly I had a doc appt to remove skin cancer spots…had to cancell..no insurance you’d think they had a fire they way they dumped alot of employees!

  2. Cat Hudson says:

    Why am I not surprised at the cold hearted approach to these workers who lost their jobs as a result of unsafe conditions at the Mill.
    This is not the first time a fire occurred with the exact same dryer! There needs to be a full investigation into the lack of safety precautions by this mill. And a class action suit needs to be filed by the employee’s of this mill. Bottom line the issue with that dryer has existed for years and this was the second fire with that dryer. I personally knew 3 people who worked there when it was Springfield Forest Products when that dryer caught fire the first time. That dryer has been a problem since.
    Had the owners of this mill. Taken care of these families after their lack of proper maintenance, repair and or replacement. Then I would not be writing this post I am angry! And what a joke refer people to apply for Cover Oregon that is still a huge mess. Cobra that is so expensive!!! How would somebody unemployed be able pay for it.
    BOTTOM LINE THE FIRE WAS THE MILLS FAULT AND THE OWNERS SHOULD KEEP PROVIDING MEDICAL INSURANCE! UNTIL THESE EMPLOYEE’S FIND NEW JOBS. AND THEY SHOULD PAY EACH WORKER AT LEAST A MONTHS WAGES.. THEY HAVE INSURANCE TO COVER THEIR LOSS. THESE FAMILY’S HAVE NOTHING!

    1. Toothless says:

      Did you work there? It’s entertaining to see the ignorant puke out their opinions.

      Do you really think the company will support 200+ people with no source of income?
      At the risk of 500 other employees?

      There are people on site 24 hrs a day to fire watch, secure, access damage, and move
      forward.

      I guess we’re wasting our time, because you have the case solved.

      I do like the idea of a class action law suit. Get a lawyer to take the case, the watch the
      lawyer get rich. Brilliant idea, Cat.

      1. Charles Wical says:

        Toothless.

        You got me to thinking with your statement: “Do you really think the company will support 200+ people with no source of income?
        At the risk of 500 other employees?”

        Shazaam! Medicaid provides health insurance for people with no source of income – at the risk of hard-working taxpayers; you know, taxpayers such as what these mill workers are(were) – who WANT to work as a “source of income.”

        (While your point is well-taken, just wanted to add some on-point relativity, as the percentage of non-workers to workers seemingly increases).

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