Apr 08, 2020 13:17 UTC
  • US Senate Dems propose $25,000 in hazard pay amid covid-19 pandemic

Democrats in the United States Senate have proposed a plan to offer the country’s essential workers and medical staff $25,000.

“As the covid pandemic has reached alarming new levels, our health care system is strained to the max, our economy is strained to the max,” said US Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of New York Wednesday. “Doctors and nurses, medical personnel of all types are putting their lives on the line every single day to fight this disease and save others… And so are people not in the medical profession but in essential services: grocery store workers, truck drivers, drug store workers and pharmacists.”

The $25,000-figure amounts to a $13-per-hour raise for doctors, nurses and other essential workers, such as grocery store clerks.

“For these Americans, working from home is not an option. Social distancing is not an option,” said the New York lawmaker, whose state has been hardest hit by the fast-growing coronavirus outbreak.

The state recorded its highest single-day increase in virus deaths on Tuesday.

The 731 deaths reported brought the total to 5,489 deaths and 138,836 infections.

Democrats further proposed an essential worker recruitment incentive payment of $15,000 to medical professionals.