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National Conference Set for June 16-17 in Washington; ’Benefits at Risk: Meeting the Challenge of Providing Health Care Benefits and Retirement Income in the 21st Century’


WASHINGTON, May 31 -- As U.S. employers continue to scale down and even eliminate employee health and retirement benefits--traditionally two of the most important sources of economic security for middle class Americans--the looming specter of fundamental changes to the U.S. Social Security and Medicare systems has sparked the most intense public and social policy debates of the new millennium.

Responding to the challenge of securing the retirement and health care needs of today and tomorrow’s workforce is the theme of the Sixth National Policy Forum sponsored by the Labor and Employment Relations Association (LERA) set for June 16-17, 2005 at the Hotel Washington, located one block from the Whitehouse at 15th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown Washington, DC. The two-day conference will feature distinguished speakers, including US Senator Ron Wyden, and Congressman John Boehner, as well as panelists drawn from a broad cross section of legislators, policy experts, leading researchers, business leaders and labor and employee relations practitioners. Forum participants will learn how workers, their families, employers and government stakeholders are faring under current practice and public policy, and the prospects for--and potential impact of-- legislative and policy changes currently under debate. Attendees will be provided a unique opportunity to both inform and participate in the public policy dialogue concerning one of today’s most pressing problems. Topics to be covered include:

-- The Future of Social Security

-- Int’l. Comparison of Health Care Systems

-- Defined Contribution Savings Plans

-- Health Care Quality in the U.S.

-- Defined Benefit Pension Plans

-- Health Care Costs and Access

-- Multi-Employer Pension Plans

-- Workers’ Compensation and Health Care Benefits

-- Trends in Retirement Income Bargaining

-- Trends in Health Care Bargaining

LERA invites you to join key government representatives, and leaders from labor, business, and academia to explore these important topics. For more information on the conference including registration information and conference hotel accommodation rates, visit LERA’s web site at or contact the LERA national office at 217-333-0072.

LERA (formerly known as the Industrial Relations Research Association), a not-for profit educational association founded in 1947, is dedicated to bringing together representatives of labor, management, academia, government, neutrals and advocates to share ideas, developments, issues, and practices in the field of Industrial Relations and Human Resources. Its membership represents a broad cross-section of the labor and employment relations community.



Bona fide press representatives and Capitol Hill staffers can attend on a complimentary basis if pre-registered by June 9th. Contact Lisa Sprinkle, LERA at 217-333-0072 or email


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