Maryland Matters
May 10, 2024
Op-ed by Vincent DeMarco


“The tragic collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore caused six deaths and upended the lives of countless workers who lost jobs due to the closure of the Port of Baltimore. Thanks to efforts by federal, state and local officials, these workers are getting support to help them get by.

One program has played a quiet, but critical role in supporting laid-off workers who lost access to their workplace benefits along with their income. Under legislation passed by the General Assembly in 2021 with the critical support of the Maryland Health Care For All Coalition, people filing claims for unemployment insurance can easily start the process of enrolling in affordable health insurance — by simply checking a box on their unemployment application.

This program is a commonsense approach that gives laid-off workers a straightforward way to get health insurance. “

Read the full op-ed at

Last modified: May 10, 2024