Online Petition Seeks Hazard Pay For Essential Workers
A petition has popped up online suggesting that essential workers get a bonus payment in the same amount as those receiving unemployment benefits.
The latest petition posted by Moveon.org is in favor of all "essential workers" still on the job getting a $600 bonus from the government. They feel that since those who are receiving unemployment benefits right now are entitled to $600 in extra payments, those still on the job should get the same "bonus". Here is how they worded it:
Take initiative to compensate the ones still working and at risk with the same extra $600 that the unemployed are receiving. We should be paid from the time this epidemic began because when some were laid off, those who stayed working were at risk and risking the health of ourselves as well as our families.
It's an interesting question. I'm sure those on unemployment would much rather be back on the job, earning for themselves and their families. The extra $600 helps many to fill the gap between what they once made and what unemployment allows them now. It's a nice gesture from Uncle Sam, to be sure.
However, many people declared "essential" are still on the job. Still paying for gas, buying food while away from home, etc and ... here's the big one ... risking infecting themselves and/or their families with COVID 19. Should those folks also be granted an extra $600 as a form of "hazard pay"?
As I write this, almost 1.3 million people have signed the petition. (You can sign here.) I don't know how this will or will not affect the governments' actions but I, as an "essential", am going to sign it.
What do you think?