Union Representing Essential Workers on the Frontlines of COVID-19 Calls for Senate Bill to Include Layoff Protection, Essential Pay and PPE
The following statement is attributable to Kyle Bragg, President of 32BJ SEIU:
“The HEROES Act turns gratitude into action and is an important step towards helping essential workers who have risked their lives. The up to $10,000 premium pay will provide long-overdue compensation for the cleaners, residential workers, security officers, and other service workers who have been keeping cities clean and safe during this crisis. We are pleased that the bill provides desperately needed PPE, which will be even more necessary as cities begin the process of reopening. The bill also delivers $1 trillion in aid to state and local governments to keep vital services in place.
“The majority of 32BJ members immigrants and people of color who are disproportionately affected by COVID-19. The HEROES Act helps to address some of the glaring inequities that have been exacerbated by this crisis by demanding data on racial disparities and COVID and by providing assistance for struggling families. The HEROES Act guarantees paid sick time and expands unemployment insurance and access to health care. Also importantly, it extends DACA and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for immigrants so that these long time community members can continue to remain with their families and contribute as essential workers.
“Now we call on the Senate to do all it can to protect essential workers so they have full access to emergency relief like layoff protection, essential pay and personal protective equipment to avoid infection. Essential building service workers have made enormous sacrifices to do their jobs during COVID. We shouldn’t repay them with pink slips. 32BJ members are united in demanding that the Senate take urgent action to protect essential workers.”
With over 175,000 members in eleven states and Washington, D.C., 32BJ SEIU is the largest property service workers union in the country.