Yesterday’s landmark ruling by the Supreme Court, upholding most major provisions of National Health Care Reform, has implications not only for millions of uninsured Americans nationwide but also for Academic Student Employees here at UW. As you may recall, in our recent negotiations with UW we secured key changes to the GAIP health insurance program that stemmed from the passage of the ACA legislation, including the elimination of the maximum benefit cap, the elimination of pre-existing condition restrictions, and inclusion of stronger preventive care measures, among other benefits. The University agreed in this year’s collective bargaining to absorb the costs of incorporating these provisions into the plan. Therefore today’s Supreme Court’s decision affirms that our plan will incorporate these changes with no increase in our premium costs.The passage (and confirmation) of the Affordable Care Act represents a milestone victory in a sustained fight for universal health care. UAW members have mobilized along with other social justice advocates to beat back right-wing challenges led by Washington State Gubernatorial Candidate Rob McKenna. While more work can certainly be done to bring about truly universal health care, today marks another major step towards realization of a more inclusive and fair system that will improve the lives of our members.