National Health Law Program and Center for Civil Justice announce Health Law Partnership Project

FLINT—The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) and the Center for Civil Justice (CCJ) have established a Health Law Partnership Project to ensure access to Medicaid and ACA coverage, with an emphasis on combating racial disparities in health in the State of Michigan. NHeLP and CCJ have a shared commitment to achieving health equity.

“Michigan is still reeling from the effects of COVID:19, which laid bare persistent health disparities in our state. Black residents represent 14% of the state’s population, yet constitute 40% of the state’s confirmed COVID:19 deaths. We also know that communities of color have been disproportionately subjected to the harsh economic fallout of the pandemic. CCJ is committed to investigating the causes of racial inequity in our state and fighting for a just recovery,” stated Kelly Bidelman, CCJ’s Executive Director.

The goals of the Project include preserving and protecting access to high quality healthcare, including through Medicaid, the Affordable Care Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act; educating policymakers and the public on the importance of Medicaid and what attacks on the program mean for people in our state; and advancing health equity by advocating for laws, policies and practices that counteract structural racism, institutional barriers and implicit bias in the U.S. healthcare system.

“We are committed to ensuring access to quality healthcare for people across the country and are proud to partner with CCJ to address barriers to accessing healthcare and health inequities in Michigan. We have an opportunity to rebuild a more just society and critical to that infrastructure is access to healthcare that is free from discrimination regardless of income or identity,” said Jane Perkins, Legal Director of NHeLP.

The organizations recently partnered to challenge Michigan’s Medicaid work requirements in federal court, which stopped the implementation of work requirements in Michigan. It was estimated that the work requirements would result in over 100,000 Michigan residents losing Medicaid coverage. CCJ and NHeLP look forward to continuing their productive relationship to advance health rights for low-income and underserved populations.

Center for Civil Justice advocates for the rights of people experiencing poverty in Michigan. CCJ strives to achieve systemic change that improves the lives of low-income Michigan residents and secures greater access to basic needs, including food and nutrition, healthcare and housing. CCJ is committed to addressing racial disparities within the state’s healthcare system and ensuring that everyone in the state has access to quality and affordable care.

National Health Law Program is a national organization that protects and advances health rights of low-income and underserved individuals and families through advocacy, education and litigation at the federal and state levels to advance health and civil rights in the United States. Their litigation and policy experts fight for the rights of millions of people struggling to access affordable, quality health care coverage free from discrimination.


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