Obamacare Call Center Offers No Health Insurance Benefits For Employees

Here’s a bit of irony. Earlier in the year, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was excited to announce the opening of a call center, which would be open 24 hours a day, and whose purpose was to educate Americans about Obamacare and to help people get “affordable” health care.

One of the branches of that call center will go live in a couple months in Concord, California inside Contra Costa County. It was big local news in that county, since this branch of the Obamacare call center was supposed to be an economic boon to that area in California.

It was government job creation in action. People were going to be able to get fulltime jobs and have health insurance. People even left their current fulltime jobs to become fulltime customer service representatives, working for this call center. Only 204 positions were available, but over 7,000 people applied.

So, here’s the irony part. Or, hypocrisy. Half of those positions turned out to be “part time intermittent” jobs that offered zero health insurance benefits, in spite of “staff reports list[ing] all 204 jobs as full-time and a job posting [saying] the same.” So much for “government job creation in action. More like “job creation inaction.” (See what I did there?) As one anonymous employee of the call center said, “What’s really ironic is working for a call center and trying to help people get health care, but we can’t afford it ourselves.”

The Contra Costa Times reported that it was a surprise to the county supervisor, Karen Mitchoff:

 “‘The battle for the call center was over jobs with good working wages and benefits; I never dreamed they would be part-time,’ said Karen Mitchoff, who has heard from complaining constituents and expressed her ‘extreme displeasure with how it was handled’ to call center supervisors. One recent hire, who last week learned the job would be part-time, said the new ‘intermittent’ employees feel like they’ve been used as a political tool, and many now regret applying for the positions.”

Yep, of course they were played. Never trust a salesman who tells you, “Boy, have I got a dealio for you.” Never trust a politician who says the same thing. Rest assured, you will be used as a “political tool” to glorify the politicians responsible for whatever “job creating” scheme they’ve come up with.