Help Payday Afford Health Insurance – We Can’t Right Now


Last week, I was sick with the flu and couldn’t go to the doctor. This is because Tennessee is one of 18 states in the country that hasn’t expanded Medicaid. I don’t know about you, but this is something that I don’t like the sound of.

Medicaid has been known to provide a lifeline to so many who are in need of their services, especially when it concerns the elderly. Did you know that Medicaid and nursing home planning go hand in hand? I didn’t either, until my friend told me that somewhere like Rochester Law Center has a service provided specifically for it. When you think about it, this can be really useful for those of us who are older, or who have older relatives to look after. And this is why it angers me that Tennessee hasn’t decided to expand Medicaid, and provide programs similar to those offered by the California state government (read more on While the Republican Governor of Tennessee Bill Haslam has attempted to pass Medicaid expansion, he so far has blocked by Tea Party conservatives in the Tennessee State Legislature.

The result is that I don’t go to the doctor when I get sick. Worse, as PTSD survivor, I am unable to afford therapy. Instead, I rely on a small dose of medical cannabis products ( such as CBD oil, for instance) and a patchwork of support groups and friends, for my mental health needs. I wish it weren’t this way, but Payday isn’t making enough money yet for me to be able to afford health insurance. If they were able to pull enough money, then I could have easily asked for an insurance quote from health insurance jacksonville fl or from some insurance company nearby. If I can avail an insurance, it might as well help me to avoid the high hospital bill too.

So, as Payday Readers, I need your help so that I can afford to buy health care before open enrollment ends on January 3rd. Giving to our winter fundraising drive is the best way to do this.

Currently, Payday has raised $1,705 towards our $5,000 winter fundraising drive.

After only six months of organizing, we already have 117 monthly dues-paying readers contributing an average of $7.97 per month for a total $926 per month. At our current rate of growth, our one-and-a-half person operation will be fully sustainable within 12 months without any grant money. Having $5,000 will allow us to get through to the summer and apply for major grants.

So please, if you can, donate here to Payday and spread the word on social media about it.

Already, Payday has had a big impact on labor in the South:

  • Payday was the first publication in the U.S. to break the story of Republicans Kentucky preparing to pass “Right-to-Work.”

  • We were the only major outlet to cover how delays by the Obama Administration could stop West, Texas safety reforms from taking effect.

  • When six children were killed in a school bus crash in Chattanooga, Payday was the first outlet to report on the school bus company’s long track record of worker intimidation and safety violations.

  • Payday Report was the first outlet to expose how the political spending of Alliance Resources Partner CEO Joe Craft was leading to refusal of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring the MIner’s Relief Act.

In the next couple months, we plan to cover the union drive at Boeing in South Carolina, union busting in the construction industry in Nashville, and efforts by the City of Chattanooga to sue General Electric over a plant closing.

We have a lot we want to, but we need your help to do it.

Think of Payday like Community Supported Agriculture, but for labor reporting. We are sustained by our readers and produce a high-quality labor reporting that you can’t find anywhere else, and we are consistently beating the big publications on the big stories

So please, donate if you can, spread the word if you can’t, and feel free to contact me with ideas about how to expand Payday.

So please, if you can donate here and get out the word.

Love & Solidarity,


Mike Elk is a Sidney award winner and a lifetime member of the Washington-Baltimore NewsGuild. He previously served as senior labor reporter at POLITICO, as an investigative reporter at In These Times Magazine, and has written for The New York Times. In 2015, Elk was illegally fired for union organizing at POLITICO and used his NLRB settlement to found Payday Report in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Follow him on Twitter @MikeElk or email him: [email protected]

Contribute to Payday’s winter fundraising drive today and help us continue covering workers that the mainstream media ignores.

About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter and alumni of the Guardian. In addition to filing nearly 2,000 stories from 46 states, Elk traveled with Lula from Sáo Bernando do Campos all the way to the Oval Office in the White House. Credited by the Washington Post for being the first reporter to track the strike wave systematically, Elk started Payday Report using his NLRB settlement from being illegally fired for union organizing in 2015. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and works frequently in Rio de Janeiro, where he attended college at PUC-Rio. He speaks both Portuguese and Pittsburghese fluently. His email is [email protected]

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