NYC Wants To Force Retired NYPD, FDNY, EMS, Into Inferior Medicare Advantage Plan, Where Insurer, Not Doctor, Is Gatekeeper To Healthcare For Elderly – Interview With Marianne Pizzitola

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NYC Retired Workers, Including Police, Fire, EMS, Who Are No Longer Voting Union Members, Being Forced Into Inferior Healthcare Plans To Save NYC Money, At Cost Of Contractual Obligations

 

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Update: The lawsuit referred to in the interview received a decision in favor of the retirees last week.  The permanent injunction says that the City cannot force retirees into the Medicare Advantage plan. The City has already filed an appeal. 

Marianne Pizzitola, of the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees, sat down with Staten Islander News Organization to provide an update on the healthcare issue for retired City workers. The Aetna plan that the City is trying to force all retirees into is not the same as the previously available MediGap plan, as they are known. A MediGap plan covers the 20% of bills that Medicare itself doesn’t cover.


These plans have a low cost per retiree, of around $200 per month. You may or may not know that Medicare pays for most of the healthcare that retired persons need, even those who have developed health problems later in their lives. But Medicare doesn’t pay for all of it. That is where the MediGap plan comes in.

The contract between the City of New York and its Union workers is that the City will pay the full cost of healthcare for every Union member, as well as for their dependents, up to the benchmark known as the HIP/HMO benchmark. Active union members have multiple plans to choose from for their healthcare while they are employed, and the retired workers also had a number of plans to choose from, including those which are Medicare Advantage plans.

These supplemental plans fill in the gap that is left after Medicare pays for what they cover for each person on Medicare. For the most part, people don’t want to enroll in these Advantage programs because there aren’t as many doctors in their network.

In preparing for the case that just recently received a decision in favor of the retirees (place link here), they have been asking the City retirees to ask their doctors if they accept this plan. Most of the doctors who have been asked have said they do not accept the plan, or any Medicare Advantage plan.

The Doctor Is No Longer Able To Provide You With Care You Need, As Insurance Company Acts As Gatekeeper To Needed Treatments

The Medicare Advantage plans are an advantage to the insurance companies. They are insurance plans that are run by private for-profit companies, and they are a plan that seeks to maximize profits. Many private insurance companies are all about profiting and saving money, just as any other for-profit business is.

These companies are now able to provide these Medicare Advantage insurance plans that delay and deny all types of healthcare, instead of the traditional MediGap plan. If a doctor orders a person to get a treatment, and it should be covered, the insurance companies will in many cases still deny the claims. Weekly calls are often necessary in these private insurance plans, and often even this does not help to get them to pay valid claims.

With many covered items, a prior approval is needed, and when this happens, the insurance company will often delay and deny care to the insured person for as long as possible. If someone does not have the time or energy to devote to contacting the insurance company and essentially pestering them, their care will be denied, and it won’t be paid for.

Many physicians do not accept these types of plans for a very simple reason: they would have to hire a full-time person just to keep on top of the insurance companies who deny the care they provide. For many doctors, it is easier to just not accept the plan.

The City Wants To Force Retirees Into A Much Smaller Number Of Health Insurance Plans That Are Only Medicare Advantage Plans, In Order To Give Current Workers Raises, Make Up For Misuse Of Funds For Active Workers’ Healthcare Over Time

In order for the City to raise money, they have been approached by Aetna with a plan for retirees that is being sold as superior, but it is actually inferior. The City has been responsible, under the Union contract and other regulations, for paying the health insurance costs of all active employees, retired employees, and their dependents. This is one of the main reasons why a lot of City workers over the years have chosen to work for the City.

In most instances and in most positions, a city or municipal job does not pay as well as its private, for-profit counterpart. Many private companies offer a better salary, better vacation time, and other perks that make working for the City in many instances a financial sacrifice. However, people have often chosen this field for many reasons, including serving the members of their community. But in many cases, what made the choice easier was that when you were retired, your healthcare would be taken care of.

In all ways, the City is now reneging on this promise that was made to the workers at the time. The City is forcing every retiree into a small number of Medicare Advantage plans only. These plans are not accepted by a large number of their doctors, and Marianne has been fighting this for three years. It all started when they read about it in a local newspaper story.


Now, they have three lawsuits that are active. The expenses for the retirees, who are all living on fixed pensions, will be difficult to maintain for the length of time that may be necessary. All to defend what they earned and what they were promised, and it is a process that is very expensive. The City has very deep pockets. They can afford to appeal to every level of court. At every turn, there is a possibility that a judge will rule against the workers. This is an ethical issue as well, since if the City will diminish a worker’s healthcare after they have retired, then why would someone sacrifice so much in order to have it taken away after the fact. As stated before, the rising costs of healthcare is one of the main reasons that municipal workers chose lower paying jobs: to get better healthcare when it would be needed most.

If retirees want to choose a Medicare Advantage plan, they should be able to do so. Some active workers, and even some retirees, have chosen these plans, both currently and in the past. However, the alternative plans they have provided for decades should be kept in place. This is the main argument of the lawsuits.

The MediGap plan that is presently offered to retirees by the City is a superior plan for most people over the Medicare Advantage Plan. These plans have been around for many decades, and most doctors and hospitals accept these plans. They do not require as many prior authorizations for everything that they cover. They pay when they are supposed to; they don’t delay and deny in way that the newer privatized Medicare Advantage plans do.

Another issue with the new plans is that they have a contract with the City for only two years, a period of time which Marianne calls the Honeymoon period. After that, the insurer can renegotiate any of the terms of their agreement, which means that they can start charging higher premiums to members of the plan. This also means that they can charge more than the HIP/HMO Benchmark, making it so that the retiree will have to pay the premium difference over what the City pays.

To give you a frame of reference, when a retired person chooses this plan voluntarily, paying for it themselves, people have been quoted with a premium cost of $800 per month. This means that, while Aetna is giving the plan to the City for free now, meaning without premiums for members, that could change at any time in the future when they renegotiate the contract. Then the members could likely have to pay any shortfall in premium when the contract is renewed.

It can also be hard for people with preexisting conditions and other issues to afford Medicare Advantage plans, which are not regulated in the same way as the MediGap plans are. Medicare Advantage plans do accept patients with existing conditions, but such patients will also have to pay a higher premium. New York law provides that the MediGap insurance plans must accept all persons over the age of 65, without regard for any pre-existing health conditions. This is called Guaranteed Issue.

While Medicare Advantage plans are also Guaranteed issue for all persons over the age of 65, they tend to charge more for patients, based on the level of care they are anticipated to need. But the largest issue of the Medicare Advantage plans are their closed provider networks, where patients have a much smaller pool of doctors and specialists that they will be able to see.

The plan the City presently has as a choice for their retired workers is run by EmblemHealth and is known as Senior Care. Senior Care has been around for a very long time, and they have reasonable fees and fewer prior authorizations. Over the years, many retired workers have been enrolled in this plan, and they are able to see their preferred physicians and specialists, and they are able to get most of the healthcare that they need covered by insurance. Most of the retirees who have these plans are happy with them, and want to continue their enrollment into these plans. These are the plans the City wants to take away from retired workers.

Retirees should not be forced into the inferior healthcare plan that has already been determined by several judges to be in violation of the City’s contract with its former Union workers who are now retired. From our previous conversation with Marianne, we learned that retired Union workers are no longer members of the Union. Thus, these decisions are being made for them, without their input or consent.

City Council, NYS State Assembly, Both Can Stop The Need For Litigation, Preserve Healthcare For Retired Firefighters, Police Officers, EMS Workers, Teachers, Other Municipal Workers By Signing Onto Bills In Each Body

As Marianne mentions, and many of our readers know, particularly those who are attorneys, litigation is very expensive and very time consuming. The crucial part, though, is how expensive this fight is, especially for retired City workers on a fixed pension, which is often not very large. City Council members, mayors, governors, along with those in managerial positions, also receive pensions and healthcare from the City after their retirement, but they were not in the Union, so they did not get to vote on these issues.

In order for Intro 1099, the New York City Council bill that is currently seeking lawmakers to sign onto it, would correct this issue in a simple way. Intro 1099 would codify into law the City’s responsibility to provide multiple healthcare plans to retired City workers.

It is a very simple bill. It reads as follows: “This bill would require the City to offer Medicare-eligible city retirees and their Medicare-eligible dependents at least one Medigap plan with benefits equivalent to or better than those available to city retirees and their dependents as of December 31, 2021. The bill would not impair employee organizations from negotiating terms and conditions of employment for their employee members.” This simply means that the above-mentioned MediGap plan available in 2021 would need to be in effect for City workers and their dependents for the span of their retirements.

As previously stated, this plan costs the City about $200 per month per retirees. While many have said that the Medicare Advantage plan is free to the City, and will save the City millions of dollars, this is not the truth. Marianne speaks about this in the previous interview, which can be seen here

Insurance Companies Overcharging the Medicare Trust, Endangering The Healthcare Of ALL Americans, Already Under Investigation By Office Of Inspector General For Committing Medicare Fraud

Something else that Marianne mentions in the interview is something that insurance companies have been doing, called up-coding. They will come to senior’s homes, and talk to them about their heath. They will ask dozens of questions. Later, the insurance company will decide to charge more to the Medicare Trust for that employee. They are often practicing up-coding. This may be invisible to the Medicare patient, but it causes the Medicare Trust, which is often stated to not have sufficient funds to pay for healthcare of all retired Americans, to be drained more quickly, often at a rate double what it should be.

When the insurance representative comes to a senior’s home, the questions they ask allow them to claim that the patient is an increased risk to them. Thus, they have to charge more to the Medicare Trust for the same level of care that the patient was previously provided. This is Medicare fraud, and Aetna is currently under investigation for this very problem.

Going forward

Marianne provides many ways in the video for people to get involved. She suggests most importantly contacting your City Council members and asking them to sign onto this important, succinct, and brief bill, is a good place to start.

A veto-proof majority is needed for this bill to succeed. As the Mayor is the one currently pushing for this Medicare change for retirees, he will certainly veto the bill. Without that majority, the bill will not succeed.

The matching bill in the Assembly is Assembly Bill 7866, found here

For the previous update on this topic, please visit this article.

An opinion about this topic can be found at this article.


Marianne Pizzitola’s previous interview with the Staten Islander.

Banner Image: Youtube Video Banner. Image Credit – Staten Islander News 


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This byline indicates that this article was penned by a member/members of the Staten Islander News Organization office team. Our staff writers are the backbone of our newspaper, performing all sorts of important tasks like conducting interviews, investigating leads, besides writing the news stories you see.

123 Comments

  • Avatar Josh T. says:

    this is old news

    i read they won

  • Avatar Frankie Lungs says:

    Our politicians failed us once again. I am sick and tired of the republicans AND the democrats with their endless promises and fake BS. I vote republican usually but why bother? Neither party represents me.

    • MLN8D MLN8D says:

      As a Black man, I have to frame it all in terms of how each party affects the Black community. With this issue, many workers for the city who retired are BLACK FOLKS. And other peoples of color. All I can say is, neither party is perfect, and I can’t endorse either side on this issue. Both being racist. Some Black folks may vote red and others blue but I vote no way and stay home and take a nap instead. I work 40+ hours a week, why go out of my way to give up an afternoon to put my name next to some shady M*er who won’t keep his promises anyhow and lets BLACK retirees fall down? In any case, I think we should look at the individual. With that said, all the politicians today seem to be cast from a mold, either a republican mold or a democrat one. Why not just have AI run things if everyone has to agree on everything just to even get into politics?

      • 2 FoXEEE 2 FoXEEE says:

        “Why not just have AI run things if everyone has to agree on everything just to even get into politics?”

        That’s your conclusion?! Umm….After that big build-up, I was anticipating something…more…

        ” I can’t endorse either side on this issue. Both being racist.”

        I don’t think you realize that people of all races are being affected! Yes! You are right! It IS affecting Black ppl. That is an undeniable fact. But it affects all kinds of people with different life stories and backgrounds and heritages and “races.” I think we’re just the Human race, so I hate even using that term.

        If you are a retiree, you need to get up from your nap and do something. You’re going to have to join arms with ppl of other races to make sure you, and future city workers, don’t get screwed. You sound depressed, dude. Maybe get out and get some fresh air? Really, I feel for you…

        • Avatar Krishna P says:

          ‘ You sound depressed, dude. ‘

          They have prescription ketamine now for depression. Supposed to work wonders.

          • Avatar Dragonball Z Forever says:

            What are you supposed to do if you get stuck in a K hole? How is a doctor halfway across the country going to help you. lol Brings back memories of my raving days in the 90s.

            • Avatar Mr. Marino says:

              I doubt the dose you take via prescription approaches the likely high doses people used to take twenty five years ago at raves. Then again, who knows. I have to look into this and see if it’s bull ****.

        • Avatar Sleepy in W Brighton says:

          He clearly stated that he is ***NOT*** retired. Why even respond if you don’t read first?

      • Avatar Irina says:

        What if the computers are programmed to be racist?

        That would be even worse. Be careful what you wish for!

        • Avatar Arnold Reiss says:

          What is the computers APPEAR top be fair but are SECRETLY programmed to be racist?

        • Avatar Mohammed says:

          What if the computers are programmed to appear racist so then the programmers can “iron out the kinks” but it’s a a plan and the computer and programmers is secretly racist pretending they are not.

      • Avatar no says:

        With that said, all the politicians today seem to be cast from a mold, either a republican mold or a democrat one.

        sooooooooo trueeeeeeeeeeee

      • Avatar Gupta says:

        “everyone has to agree on everything just to even get into politics”

        they don’t

        that’s why we have debates

        *sheesh*

        • Avatar Jennifer in Astoria says:

          No that’s pure BS if u want to be a republican you have to toe the line same with the democrats if you don’t do and feel and think as they do they boot you sorry you got it wrong bub

      • Avatar Johnny T. says:

        -Why not just have AI run things-

        Guarantee poster is Gen Z.

        These kids play with that chat thing and think they know everything. Or, rather that it knows everything.

        What a joke.

      • Avatar Nellie says:

        Nah, it’s not racism, man. It’s straight CLASSISM.

        The higher classes want to make money off of us through health care and everything else. That’s what this health care privatization is. The corporate class siphoning money off of us, money that should be for health care.

        Us workers, we pay taxes and work our asses off. If we’re lucky we’re in a union. Or, employed by a municipality. Otherwise, that’s it. health care? On. Your. Own.

        They don’t care if you back or white. They aren’t even all white like you think, MLN8D! You’re sadly mistaken. The rulers of the world, in terms of money and clout, they of *every* color.

        I think it’s fine if you are looking out for you and yours first, we have to, no one else will, but you can’t then turn your back on everyone else because of skin color. That is just wrong. We’re all in this together.

        And just because you’re older, lazing around that’s no excuse . Get up and visit your grandchildren. Plant a garden. Do something other than watch TV and doze off. That s*** is toxic.

        • Avatar Dem4Lyfe says:

          My parents waste so much time in front of the TV, It’s sad. I think FOX news is programming them to eat cheesecake. They;re retired NYC workers, both of them. They need to do more stuff.

          • island skipper island skipper says:

            Is that why my cheesecake bill quadrupled as my Fox viewing time doubled? Hmm…Makes sense. *eats another delicious spoon of cheesecake*

            • Avatar Stevie says:

              I actually ran out and bought a cheesecake after reading this last time I went shopping the other day. Vastly disappointed. Hungarian cheesecake is my fave, tho my grandma, while alive in this world, used to make a chocolate Italian cheesecake that was more fluffy but also amazing. Veins of chocolate. So yummy..

              But seriously, too much TV time is a thing. I grew up in front of the TV. In the morning getting ready for school, and any time I wasn’t outside playing, or later outside or playing Atari back in 1979.

              I was eleven then. Now, I never turn on the TV. I don’t have Netflix or any of that stuff.

            • Avatar trueforu says:

              You must need another hearing aid.

              It said, “Eat some yummy, yummy cheesecake.”

              no

              it was

              “At some Trump rally, some Mom made a sign”

              and

              ” Edison was a capitalist.”

              and

              “Watch FOX”

              hearing aids might help

        • Avatar Thumb Wrestling World Champ says:

          He didn’t once say he was older.

        • Avatar Whomever you'd least imagine says:

          …like the gig economy…same idea in my mind. Same class benefits…same class loses…instead of a paid worker you get contractors, with no legal protections like paid employees have,

          Shareholders get a piece of the action…money gets kicked up to the company via an app..instantly!…and things that were formerly work where a person worked for themselves, now to get ahead, they give a part of their earnings to some company.

          As far as before Uber, Lyft, and all that, you had medallion cabs that had many drivers working solo, or for small garages. Same with traveling occupations.

          It’s as bad as a mob taking a cut from legit businesses.

          Pay to play, I guess…

          I mean, you can just drive for Uber.or Lyft and I’m sure make decent money. But my point is, it’s now a big corporate thing. Everything’s going that way, ya’ know…

      • Avatar Antonio says:

        everyone has to agree on everything just to even get into politics

        WHAT?!?!? Tu sei pazzo. 😛

        lol This is why we have debates. Candidates are different. So so different sometimes.

        I am Siciliano, I’ve been chased by the KKK, called n****, called M********, and lots more. My skin is probably as dark as yours unless you’re Nigerian. They aren’t going to give us a harder time for that. They just don’t care about any of the retirees, and think about it, current city workers, because this affects them as well. It isn’t a race issue.

        • Avatar I can spot a lair at 100 feet says:

          Yeah, OK.. I don’t believe you that the K.K.K. was chasing you. Fact: They accept Italians as white. So your story is bunko. Worthless trash.

          • Angel Dust Angel Dust says:

            That’s a lot to say. If the guy says he is dark skinned who are you to question? Do you think the KKK went up to him and asked him if he happens to be Italian? They don’t care, I’m sure. If someone is a bigot, they don’t care what your story is. They just hate people who look a certain way. It doesn’t have to make sense.

          • Avatar 🍀 Bryan🍀 says:

            When you’re being chased down because some idiots don’t like that you’re fat or whatever your story is, dude, I hope some one is there to help you. Hope you’re not surrounded by people like yourself.

            🍀 Bryan🍀

            • Avatar I can spot a lair at 100 feet says:

              Well I am in no way fat.

              I don’t have a story.

              And I don’t want or need your help or anyone else’s.

              I’m a man and I can take tare of yourself.

        • Avatar Jagger Swagger says:

          Def not a race issue

          Def a class issue

          Capitalism without checks is a monopoly game. Life is no game, though.

          • Avatar Anti Corporate Slavery Chick says:

            Checks and balances for corporations were destroyed decades ago. It’s a free-for-all now.

            • Avatar Gabe says:

              No. President Trump stopped the lazy fair economics. (Sorry, I don’t speak French, so that will have to do.) Pres. Biden is continuing this. Trickle Down economics a.k.a. Reaganomics was a big fail. The big corporations moved manufacturing and finally everything out of the U.S.A.

      • Avatar Cody says:

        “Why not just have AI run things”

        brilliant

        and when the system is racist cry to no one that at one time we voted for imperfect humans, but humans all the same.

        • Avatar Potato Mo says:

          Actually, that has nothinmg to do with it. AI or humans, no different. In both cases, whether the rulers, silicon or carbn-based listen to you matters. Either class can listen or not.

      • Avatar LoRusso says:

        As a human being, I need to frame it…

        For real real tho…that’s how I see it…

        Be inclusive. There are so many other men of different backgrounds in this with you! And, women! OFC

        Don’t forget the mamas and sisises and brothers and uncles and aunties and granmas, and grandpas. They are all in this with you. Of every color.

        Most of us have varied genetic backgrounds. Meaning, we are all mixed, from way, way back when. Culturally, there are differences. Sure. Don’t deny the Black folks, the Puerto Ricans, the Jews, the Italians, the Chinese, Asian Indians, the Mexicans, the myriad other Latinos, the Irish, the Nigerian-born immigrants, the generic “White Guy” who doesn’t even know his ethnicity because being American was more important to his ancestors… (tho losing roots is bad)

        Everyone…is in this with you. Many, many different ethnic communities are being affected. Everyone worked for the city!!

  • Avatar Dunkin Danny says:

    NYPD wake up! If your on the job now you will be SCREWED!

    I know at 27 its hard to imagine this.

    But trust me one day you WILL retire, God willing.

    Stand with the men and women who stood before you and wore that uniform!

    Politics is tearing this city and country apart.

    Anyway, I know they make it sound like its a retiree issue and its not. It is everyone’s issue. If you work for the city RIGHT NOW its your issue.

    • Avatar Jake Wins says:

      ↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑
      this is what u should remember

      • Avatar Randy W says:

        ↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑↑
        this is what u should remember

    • Avatar dfgfdgfg says:

      ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑
      THIS IS WHAT YOU SHOULD REMEMBER

  • Avatar R. Khan says:

    I am all for the law change. The court case it may backfire in appeals. The city council should change this.

    • Avatar Marcus says:

      I have little faith in politics

      • Kandy Krusher Kandy Krusher says:

        OMG my parents never stop watching FOX. Now, actually they also watch videos of Maryanne on YT because my pop is set to retire in a year.

        They are freaking out at this point. The health care will affect them because my Mom has issues and so does my sibling. But at least they’re not watching TV nonstop.I’m not a fan of CNN or FOX. Just think too much TV isn’t so good.

        They should be telling us kids that.

        • Avatar "That Guy Stevie T." says:

          Too much of anything is bad. Few exceptions.

          Even for life-giving water, this is true!!!!!!!!!!!

          Walking and running are hard to over-do. But you can, if you really try. lol

          This is actually my first reply on here..

      • Avatar Lenny says:

        I have little faith in courts

        My divorce is proof that it’s a sham

  • Avatar JET SKI JUNKIE says:

    NYPD wake up! If your on the job now you will be SCREWED!

    I know at 27 its hard to imagine this.

    But trust me one day you WILL retire, God willing.

    Stand with the men and women who stood before you and wore that uniform!

    Politics is tearing this city and country apart.

    Anyway, I know they make it sound like its a retiree issue and its not. It is everyone’s issue. If you work for the city RIGHT NOW its your issue.

    • Please do not re-post the same comment under a different username. It just makes the comment section less readable. Thanks, kindly!

      J.S.
      Junior Editor

      • CRANK CRANK says:

        We now know that Frankie Lungs loves jet skis.

        The power of logical deduction, for those of us whom were taught this fine skill., just another day.

        • ninjapaul ninjapaul says:

          Dunkin Danny is what you meant.

          Anyone know a Danny who loves to jet ski?

          And loves Dunkin Donuts coffee?

        • 660 660 says:

          “The power of logical deduction, for those of us whom were taught this fine skill., just another day.”

          I literally spit out my pretzels. :O

          muahahahahahahaha

          The power of confusion. I think I should play these numbers in this Captcha tonite?

          • Avatar TIFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF says:

            The CAPTCHAs here are a pain in the a**. And, I e-mailed them and the reply is that it’s necessary.

            I sometimes can’t figure out what it is. Do yourself a favor and hit CLICK FOR A NEW IMAGE before you share your important words!

            I suggest taking what you write and COPYING it. So if you get the CAPTCHA wrong you still have what you wrote.

            As far as the random numbers in the CAPTCHA field, those might make good lottery number guesses. Go for it. If you win, let us know OFC! lol

  • Avatar thank you for a great article team says:

    thank you for a great article team

  • Avatar Sammie says:

    this is a settled matter the city workers won congratulation

  • Avatar Hot Retiree Chica says:

    All I got to say is

    BING BONG

    None of this for BK retirees!

    Ya heard!

    Chavos is the word…why we get screwed

  • Avatar Calabrian Chef says:

    not for nothing but you guys completely skipped ppl like me. I am set to retire in two years. Go for the on the job guys. We are still union members ON THE JOB!

    Why not ask us?

    • 58 Ball Corner Pocket 58 Ball Corner Pocket says:

      Smartest guy in the room. Note I said !!guy!!, my man. Maryanne still got you beat…haha

      But you got a good point.39RX Oh I typed the code in the wrong box pfft

      Anyway, why not? All this talk about not being union repped any longer…and the answer is right here. Candelabrum Chef, thank you for the insight. If everyone jumped on and did something…added your thought…a feeling…whatever…that would be it it.

      • Anion Mouse Anion Mouse says:

        My thought? This IS a union issue because city workers who are NOT retired will be affected when THEY retire.

        • Avatar Union Strong 💪🏾 PEOPLE OVER PROFIT! says:

          Union Strong 💪🏾 PEOPLE OVER PROFIT!

        • Avatar Auntie Sonya Needs Her Medical! says:

          No, you are 100% right. It is a union issue. They don’t want people on the job figuring out they are losing choice. Choice is the basis of everything.

    • Avatar Destiny says:

      OK, have you spoken with your union reps? What did they say? Step up, already! You are helping yourself, retirees, and even ppl who haven’t even been hired yet.

  • Avatar Adriana says:

    Estoy muy feliz de que Marianne esté haciendo todo esto por todos nosotros. ¡Boricuas no le hagan el juego a esta tontería de abusar de los mayores!

    • Avatar An Actual Boriqua. says:

      It’s spelled B o r i q u a

      • Avatar 🇵🇷 🌈 🦜 🌊 🌌 ShaSha says:

        ¡Ay bendito! Wha❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓❓

        It’s spelled either way, honey.

        I think you should check on Wikipedia before you get to posting all that. Anyway, who cares?

        There’s an serious topic being discussed, so bring a serious attitude to this.

  • Avatar GOD BLESS says:

    GOD BLESS

  • Avatar Dunkin Donuts Fan says:

    I want to do my part. I made some calls. What else is there? I can’t eally afford to donate. I am on a limited fixed income.

    • Anion Mouse Anion Mouse says:

      Brew your own coffee and the difference you save you can donate to the fund.

      • Avatar •*•❧❦❧•*• Queen Dana •*•❧❦❧•*• says:

        Oh, please. That’s the most pathetic advice I’ve heard yet.

        Make some more calls. Call all the politicians. Again and again.

        Keep enjoying your Dunkin. Don’t listen to this anonymous TURKEY

      • Avatar Dunkin Donuts Fan says:

        I tried bringing coffee fro home. Doesn’t work.

  • Avatar Desiree (ex-city worker) says:

    Yes this is my hero as well. What a women!

  • Avatar Sexey Delilah says:

    I know that de-th panels are a rumor and supposed conspiracy theory.

    OK. Wheres the conspiracy now?

  • 58 Ball Corner Pocket 58 Ball Corner Pocket says:

    Yo, this lady Maryanne MUST be a lawyer in secret. lol For real real, tho….U think? haha

    Straight up, I wish my cuz had used this woman instead of his hyped up attorney, instead he went up the river for a 20 year bid. He was innocent.

    I feel like I should reevaluate my short life…I can do so much more…no doubt…

    And, I’m for real, kid…

  • Avatar L.A. says:

    I honestly feel the same way. I love my job and my wife and two kids but I feel like I am missing something, Not sure what to do next. I am set to retire in 7 years. That is a long time. I plan to open a retail store dealing in billiards and pool equipment. But I wonder if that is enough. I want to help with this issue, but it looks like you all have it covered.

    So what can I do? I will retire, and I want something now. A new hobby? I like fishing and painting. I also used to write. I just don’t feel like it’s going to go anywhere. Sort of self defeating I guess.

    • Angel Dust Angel Dust says:

      You need GOD in your life

      • Avatar 🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷 says:

        🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷🌷

    • Avatar start a fight club says:

      start a fight club

    • Avatar I Got A Cape and Tights. Just Need Superpowers says:

      Just do something. Stop sitting on your ass in your free time. I’m just guessing but that’s probably it. You like to write? Write about this issue and send the finished story to the Staten Islander. Stoop wasting your days. Only do what you really, really feel is important.

  • Avatar No Money In It says:

    The powerful establishment elites are doing this. They own over 90% of the wealth here. They want it all. We’re the new serfs on the fields of the feudal lords. Lords we don’t even know.

  • Avatar UNION STRONG says:

    UNION STRONG

  • Avatar Mr. Walker says:

    NYC ELECTED OFFICIALS: Please stop disrespecting 9-11 heroes and heroins.

  • Avatar MATT IN BULLS HEAD says:

    WAKE UP!

    THIS EFFECTS ALL NYPD AND FDNY AND DSNY AND EVERYONE! DON’T THINK ITS JUST RETIREES.

  • Avatar Rhonda says:

    All you people do is fight amongst each other so I am going to sit this one out. I hope you find a good solution because you can count me out. I am officially on the sidelines now. First of all, I don’t **** with that law *******. Not at all. This *** is over my head. And, I’m far from dumb. But for real, I see how they scammed us. That’s what the union was for. I am not a union lawyer, it’s great that Maryanne runs rings around them, but for me, it is just too much to think about.

    And second, I think it is sickening that so many retirees I talk to really aren’t interested in their own lives. They name no sense. So, I’ll be here watching. I tried helping but no one cared to listen. They talk about vacation. They talk about cars. New countertops. Are they kidding? With this going on? Huh?

    I will still send my donations and prayers but that is all. This is my fight but not my battle. Really, I am not geared to this. I suck at trying to get people interested in anything. I’m honest with myself at least. I’ll leave it to you guys.

    • Avatar Jeanine says:

      Do what you can.

      Maryanne is doing most of our work, but we are a team.

      I have social issues. So for me outreach to elected officials is not the plan.

      Still trying to figure out what. Probably letter writing.

  • Avatar Pauline Griggs says:

    Maryanne, you rock!!!!!!! 🤟

    I really appreciate all you do from the bottom of my heart, girl! If it wasn’t for you, we’d all be so dead wright now. Some probably literally with health conditions and all. Anyway, you making us all look lazy. haha

    I know people like you and it’s so lucky to work with them bec. they always pick up everyone slack

  • Avatar Jesse says:

    Why Mayor Adams not on our side

    This his health insurance to bruh

    Someone should remind the man

    He acting crazy as of late this his battle besides mines and yours

    step up my Mayor let the black retirees know you facing the same nonsense

    be real

  • Avatar "Mo" says:

    We need anupdate, Mayanne. Please send some info our way!

  • Avatar Paranoid in SI says:

    I was just OHMing and the Captcha was OHMW

    I feel like they are listening to me through my computer

    • Avatar Relax SI person says:

      HAHAHA You are actually funny! Things like that just happen in life. People call it coincidence, but there really is something interesting when we randomly wind up seeing things like that. It has happened to me so many times I can’t recall them all.

      But I am sure no one is listening to you and then making the Catchpa show up as AUHM. OHMW is not how it’s ever spelled, anyway. So relax and don’t worry!

      I think you;re reaching, friend. Anyway, what’s your view on this topic? Do you think the retirees are wrong for trying to get a better deal? I mean its worth a shot. So why not?

      I’d love to see more people commenting on this, even tho its old news. Well not exactly because it’s still ongoing and continuing.

      P.S. My Catchpa is “QMFU”. Does that mean anything? It shouldn’t! HAHAHA

  • Avatar T.T. says:

    Thank you to the Staten Islander and it’s staff for everything. I appreciate that you guys kept this story as #1 and not on a backburner. I for one will not forget this that you stood up for the EMT, FDNY, and NYPD when other papers were barely covering the issues.

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