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NRLN: Ask Congress & President To Protect Retirees In Bankruptcy Court

February 27, 2009

       If you have been reading the emails from the National Retiree Legislative Network recently, you know that Delphi salaried retirees came under the gun early this month when they were notified that Delphi Corp. filed a proposal in bankruptcy court to eliminate their health care and life insurance. Despite the diligent efforts of the retirees and their teams of attorneys, the bankruptcy court judge ruled on Feb. 24th that Delphi could eliminate the benefits as early as April 1.
        Soon after I learned about the Delphi Corp.’s bankruptcy court filing, I read on the White House website that President Obama believes that corporate bankruptcy laws should be reformed to protect workers and retirees. I faxed letters to the leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee and all 10 members of the Subcommittee on Administrative Oversight and the Courts to point out President Obama’s support for bankruptcy reform and described the plan by Delphi Corp. to eliminate the health care and life insurance benefits that salaried retirees had earned. I urged the Senators to introduce legislation to elevate the status of retirees in bankruptcy proceedings and put it on a fast track for passage.
        It is time for all of the NRLN Grassroots Network members to tell President Obama and members of Congress that corporate bankruptcy laws must be reformed to provide greater protection for the benefits that rightfully belong to retirees and future retirees. We need to motivate our nation’s political leaders to take immediate action. In today’s economic environment can any of us be confident that bankruptcy won’t be down the road for our former employer?  Two of our NRLN Retiree Associations have already been run through the gauntlet of bankruptcy court and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp.
        Please go to http://capwiz.com/abtr/home/ to access the NRLN’s sample letter asking for corporate bankruptcy reform legislation. Look for the Action Alert headline: BANKRUPTCY LAW REFORM NEEDED TO PROTECT RETIREMENT BENEFITS. Click on “Take Action.” On the next screen, type in your zip code to identify the Senators and Representative to receive your email in addition to President Obama and click “GO.” Be sure to personalize the letter with your own comments. If you have a problem accessing the Action Alert with the above link, go to www.nrln.org and click on the “Take Action Now” headline at the top of the NRLN Website’s Home Page.
       Send your email today. It would also help to call the White House and the Washington, D.C. or state office of your Senators and Representative. Phone numbers can be found through the NRLN’s Capwiz website at http://capwiz.com/abtr/dbq/officials/ . The more constituents who write and call President Obama and their Senators and Representatives, the better chance there is in gaining their attention on this important retirement issue.
       Please share this email with your family and friends and encourage them to write and call their members of Congress. Also, encourage them to sign up in the Grassroots Network at http://capwiz.com/abtr/mlm/signup/ and become an NRLN Individual Member by making a personal annual contribution. Details are available at www.nrln.org .
Bill Kadereit
President, National Retiree Legislative Network

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