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LEE IACOCCA URGES OLDER AMERICANS TO HELP MAKE AMERICA MORE COMPETITIVE THROUGH VOLUNTEERISM AND HEALTH CARE REFORM

 LEE IACOCCA URGES OLDER AMERICANS TO HELP MAKE AMERICA
 MORE COMPETITIVE THROUGH VOLUNTEERISM AND HEALTH CARE REFORM
 SAN ANTONIO, June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca urged members of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) to help make America more competitive by volunteering to work with younger generations and using the organization's clout to seek health care reform.
 Speaking at the AARP Biennial Convention here today, Iacocca said, "We have not served the younger generation as well as we might have." That could change if there were more efforts like Chrysler's World of Work program, in which volunteer employees "help kids with their homework, read to them and tell them how important it is to work hard in school."
 Another way older Americans can help the nation compete is "to use the clout that we have in Washington" to seek health care reform.
 "We are the biggest users of health care, and we can have more influence on health policy than anyone else if we want to."
 This clout should be used because high health care costs hurt America's ability to compete in the world marketplace, Iacocca said.
 "Every car or truck Chrysler builds has almost $1,100 of health costs built into it today," Iacocca said, adding most large employers like Chrysler pay a disproportionate share of total health costs.
 "In the absence of a national health policy we have a de facto policy in America called 'cost shifting.' The idea is, get somebody else to pay the tab."
 Large employers like Chrysler are paying an average of "28 percent more than actual costs."
 Iacocca said he supports a study by the National Leadership Coalition for Health Care Reform calling for a system whereby an employer either provides its own coverage for its employees or pays for government coverage. Any plan would need to institute real cost containment and put an end to cost shifting, he said.
 Calling AARP "a powerful lobby," Iacocca said, "If we are the ones yelling the loudest, and if we are the ones saying we're willing to make at least our share of any sacrifices needed, then health care reform might become a reality."
 -0- 6/4/92
 /CONTACT: James Kenyon of Chrysler, 313-956-4664/
 (C) CO: Chrysler Corporation; American Association of Retired Persons ST: Texas, Michigan IN: AUT SU:


ML -- DE027 -- 7165 06/04/92 16:01 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 4, 1992
Words:395
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