The New York Metropolitan Transit Authority adding benefits to honor employees who lost their lives as a result of the Covid 19 disease, coronavirus pandemic.
The MTA announced an agreement with the Transit Workers Union local 100, the International Brotherhood of. Teamsters Local 808 and a host of other labor unions representing its workers, that it will pay $500,000 to the surviving families of each worker who contracted the coronavirus while working during the pandemic.
As a part of the deal the MTA will a payment of $500,000 from the MTA to the surviving family of any worker who lost their life as a result of COVID-19, in addition to providing health insurance to the spouse and dependents to the age of 26 of the surviving family for three years. The freemen’s, which also covers non-union employees is subject to board ratification on April 22.
Transportation workers are the heroes moving heroes of this public health crisis, continuing to get healthcare workers, first responders and other essential personnel where they need to go and saving lives,” MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye Foye said. “What our frontline workers have done during this pandemic is nothing short of heroic and we believe this agreement is another crucial step in recognizing their sacrifice. The losses the MTA family has suffered are heartbreaking and our thoughts are with the families of our beloved colleagues during this challenging time.”
The agreement follows union concerns over worker safety and about 50 deaths among its staff.
We can’t bring back our heroic co-workers but we can make sure their families are taken care of,” TWU Local 100 President Tony Utano said. “We will continue to fight in Albany for additional benefits to help the families left behind and to further honor our lost heroes’ great sacrifice to this city and state.”
New York City has been the hardest hit city in the United States With more than 100,000 coronavirus cases and more than 10,000 related deaths.
In addition to the devastation among employees, the MTA has lost riders and revenue. The coronavirus shutdown has impacted the nations’ largest transit system, servicing an average of 5.5 million subway riders per day, has lost 87 percent of its passengers and revenue since non-essential businesses closed.
In response to the loss of riders, the MTA is asking the Federal government to for $4 billion in stimulus aid. The MTA is also implementing an essential service plan, catering to first responders and suspending weekday service of the B, W and Z subway lines. Express train service will go local for 4,5,6, and D trains. Off-peak, on-rush hour service for subways and buses will also see service reductions.
Since the coronavirus outbreak the MTA has distributed 2.7 million pairs of gloves and nearly 750,000 masks. The MTA continues its comprehensive disinfecting efforts systemwide with trains and buses being disinfected nightly, with the entire fleets for all agencies – more than 8,000 train cars and 5,000 buses – completed every 72 hours or less.
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