NEW YORK, August 22, 2023 – MetroPlusHealth, New York City’s high-quality and affordable health plan, today launched a new user-friendly website providing a one-stop resource page for gig workers. Through this site, gig workers will have easy access to health care services and all the resources NYC agencies offer gig workers, including rights protection information, resource direction, employment opportunities and mental health services.
Over 26 million people in the United States are gig, freelance or contract-based temporary workers who do not receive health benefits, forcing them to choose between expensive individual health insurance or opting out entirely, leaving them and their families responsible for all medical costs. The online resource tool, developed in partnership with NYC Health + Hospitals, and City agencies including the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP), helps address this gap by providing easy enrollment for gig workers and their families to MetroPlusHealth’s no-cost health, vision and dental plan.
“Gig and freelance workers make up roughly 34% of the New York City workforce, but many of these workers struggle to access the resources they need to survive and thrive in the City,” said MetroPlusHealth President and CEO Talya Schwartz, MD. “Through our partnerships with City agencies and community partners, we hope to build awareness of our offerings and further our goal of making health care accessible and affordable for all residents of New York City.”
“Gig workers, like all workers, deserve to be fairly compensated for their work and treated with respect,” said Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Vilda Vera Mayuga. “As our City’s workforce continues to evolve, it’s crucial that we strive to ensure that all workers are protected, regardless of how ‘untraditional’ the nature of the work might seem.”
New York City is home to about 65,000 app-based delivery workers, the majority of whom are migrants and members of minority communities. While these workers were anticipating a minimum wage be instated in July, the raise was put on hold pending additional hearings, forcing many workers to choose between spending on housing, food, and their own health. In addition to delivery workers, drivers, shoppers, laundry workers, bartenders, nannies, students, artists and other self-employed individuals can be gig workers, leaving tens of thousands of New Yorkers without reliable health coverage.
MetroPlusHealth believes that health care is a human right. The plan’s extensive network includes 34,000+ of the City’s top doctors, 40+ hospitals including NYU Langone, Mount Sinai, and NY Health + Hospitals, and 110+ urgent care sites including CityMD locations. Through a single point of entry, the MetroPlusHealth Essential Plan provides high-quality benefits and care management with a $0 premium, $0 deductibles, $0 co-insurance and access to telehealth services.
MetroPlusHealth’s gig worker resource site can be found in English at metroplus.org/Gig, as well as in Spanish at metroplus.org/gig-es/. Gig workers can call MetroPlusHealth at 833-697-2459. To learn more about MetroPlusHealth’s services, please visit metroplus.org.
Since 1985, MetroPlusHealth has helped the people of New York City get quality health care at little to no cost. MetroPlusHealth is the plan of choice for over 700,000 New Yorkers, and its commercial and government-sponsored plans meet the needs of individuals, families, and workforces. The MetroPlusHealth staff speaks more than 40 languages and is as diverse as the great City it serves. MetroPlusHealth is part of NYC Health + Hospitals, the nation’s largest public health system. For more information, visit metroplus.org. Join the conversation on social media at @metroplushealth.
MEDIA CONTACT: Michelle Dominguez; [email protected]