Scranton, PA – Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Ranking Member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, is joining U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Patty Murray (D-WA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Tom Udall (D-NM) and Gary Peters (D-MI) in unveiling the COVID-19 “Heroes Fund,” Senate Democrats’ proposal for the provision of pandemic premium pay to reward, retain and recruit essential workers. Senate Democrats’ proposed “Heroes Fund” consists of two major components: a $25,000 premium pay increase for essential workers, equivalent to a raise of $13 per hour from the start of the public health emergency until December 31, 2020, and a $15,000 essential worker recruitment incentive to attract and secure the workforce needed to fight the public health crisis.
“We are in a war against COVID-19, and we owe our gratitude to all of the workers who are putting their own health and safety at risk by fighting on the front lines of this pandemic,” said Senator Bob Casey. “And just like wartime, we must recognize and reward those who are on the front lines—health care professionals, first responders, personal care and home health workers, truck drivers, grocery store workers and other unsung heroes—for their selfless efforts to do the critical work of protecting our citizens and keeping our country running so millions of Americans can stay safe at home. The Heroes Fund would provide essential workers with increased compensation and incentivize others to join the fight against COVID-19.”
Essential frontline workers are the true heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic response in America. Senate Democrats believe in providing premium pay to frontline workers during this pandemic not only to reward essential workers’ for their great personal sacrifices, but also to ensure the retention of essential workers who are working grueling hours on the frontlines of this crisis as well as the recruitment of additional workers who will be needed in the months ahead.
A summary of Senate Democrats’ COVID-19 “Heroes Fund” proposal can be found here.