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Haitians brought to Miami as children need affordable health insurance access during pandemic, activists say

FILE - This May 18, 2017, file photo shows the Healthcare.gov website on a laptop computer in Washington. Mass layoffs are pushing many Americans into an unfamiliar role: Shopping for health insurance that isnt offered by an employer. A swirl of potentially confusing terms and options await inexperienced health insurance shoppers as they sort coverage plans for at least the next couple months. But experts say these obstacles can be conquered with patience and some help from agents or navigators who specialize in finding insurance. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)
FILE - This May 18, 2017, file photo shows the Healthcare.gov website on a laptop computer in Washington. Mass layoffs are pushing many Americans into an unfamiliar role: Shopping for health insurance that isnt offered by an employer. A swirl of potentially confusing terms and options await inexperienced health insurance shoppers as they sort coverage plans for at least the next couple months. But experts say these obstacles can be conquered with patience and some help from agents or navigators who specialize in finding insurance. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File) (Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

MIAMI – A group of Miami activists is asking the federal government to give Haitians who moved to South Florida when they were children access to affordable health insurance during the coronavirus pandemic.

Members of the Family Action Network Movement, a nonprofit organization formerly known as Fanm Ayisyen Nan Miyami and Haitian Women of Miami, is making the request on behalf of migrants with the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals status.

“As an organization committed to the health and safety of all immigrants, we know that access to COVID-19 testing and treatment for DACA recipients and their U.S. citizen children is absolutely critical,” Marleine Bastien, the director of the organization, said in a statement.

In a letter sent Wednesday, the organization joined about 280 others nationwide asking Secretary Alex Azar of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to expand access to affordable health insurance through the Affordable Care Act to about 200,000 DACA recipients.

“It is unacceptable to continue to exclude DACA recipients from accessing the testing and treatment they need to keep themselves and their communities safe,” the organization’s statement said Wednesday.


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