2021 Finalist, Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting

Restoring Health Care for Pacific Islanders After Decades of Unfilled Promises

Tens of thousands of Marshallese islanders fled their homes for the United States after extensive nuclear weapons testing in the 1940s and 50s washed their islands in dangerous radiation. Under an international agreement they were promised federal benefits, including Medicaid. But, in 1996 Congress stripped them of their Medicaid benefits, and the Marshallese  – many of whom now work in factories and farms in America’s heartland – have been struggling to get healthcare ever since. Their community was ravaged by COVID-19, as POLITICO reporter Dan Diamond documented through first-hand visits and outdoor interviews. As a result of his reporting on the COVID-19 crisis and the decades of neglect that the Marshallese community had suffered at the hands of the federal government, Congress officially restored Marshallese islanders’ rights to Medicaid in December 2020.

Read more about the story behind the investigation in this piece by The Journalist’s Resource.

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