MA Supreme Court Justice Ruling is a Step Forward for Legal Immigrants

Posted on May 9, 2011


In 2009, 40,000 legal immigrants in Massachusetts were barred from the State’s Commonwealth Care program. The Commonwealth Care program is important because it provides subsidies for low-income, uninsured Massachusetts residents to purchase health insurance. This change affected many vulnerable populations. As a result, 20,000 legal immigrants enrolled in the Commonwealth Care Bridge program. This program featured less benefits and higher co-pay. The remaining 20,000 lost health insurance, and became uninsured.

Many advocated to repeal the new law, and in 2010 Health Law Advocates  filed a lawsuit against the state. Good news arrived last week when the Massachusetts Supreme Court Justice “ruled that the state’s exclusion of thousands of legal immigrants from subsidized health coverage probably violates protections in the state constitution, and a legislative leader said the impact on the state budget could be significant” (Boston Globe). Although this ruling does not give full coverage back to legal immigrants, it does mark a step forward in achieving equal health rights.

Check out the video below to learn more about Health Law Advocates lawsuit:

If you have need help enrolling in health insurance call the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050.