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Jayapal Pushes Amendments that Expand Insulin Access, Protect Workers, and Curb Pentagon Spending in National Defense Spending Bill

WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07) secured key amendments in the House Fiscal Year 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) across several crucial areas including health care access, workers’ rights, and human rights. The amendments advanced crucial progressive priorities including publicly manufacturing insulin, equitable access to government-owned vaccines, and protecting workers’ rights in the workplace.

“While I continue to have severe concerns about our country’s outsized military spending and billions of dollars going to a Department of Defense that operates without sufficient oversight and accountability, this year’s National Defense Authorization Act incorporates progressive amendments that reduce wasteful spending, expand access to health care, and protect workers’ rights,” said Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal. “I am especially pleased that included in the NDAA was my amendment to authorize DOD to publicly manufacture insulin. If passed, it will break pharma’s greedy hold on this life saving drug by reducing the cost of a vial of insulin from $300 to as low as $10. As with all big spending vehicles that we consider in the House, I will continue to fight for people’s right to a fair and safe workplace, to access health care, to transparency, and to peace.” 

Amendments from the Congresswoman that were included in the National Defense Authorization Amendment are as follows:

  • Amendment #37: Requires a report on public availability, equitable access, and fair pricing of Department of Defense owned COVID-19 vaccines and their intellectual property, including the COVID-19 vaccine under development at the Walter Reed Army Institute for Research
  • Amendment #203: Authorizes the Department of Defense to engage in public manufacturing of insulin to meet the needs of military and TriCare health programs
  • Amendment #204: Conducts a nuclear threat assessment resulting from Russia’s war on Ukraine
  • Amendment #205: Provides an oversight report on weapons flow to Ukraine
  • Amendment #413: Requires federal agencies to begin debarment proceedings against federal contractors that have committed two or more violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) within the past five years. DOL would also establish a database of covered entities that have been suspended or debarred for violations of federal labor law. 
  • Amendment #540: Requires the State Department to prepare a report analyzing the effects of government-ordered internet shutdowns on human rights and global security.
  • Amendment #541: Directs HUD to report to Congress on the effectiveness of housing first policies and highlight the barriers people experiencing homelessness face in getting permanently housed