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Hazard pay included in new COVID-19 relief bill


Some already offering pay boost

A few states and hospital systems are already offering hazard pay.

On April 12, Massachusetts agreed to give about 6,500 AFSCME union members who work at state human services facilities and group homes a $5 or a $10 per hour pay increase, depending on duties. It was to stay in effect until at least May 30.

Maine Governor Janet Mills (D) also agreed to increase pay by $3-$5 an hour for AFSCME workers in state correctional and mental health facilities beginning March 29.

In New York City, the biggest hospital network, Northwell Health, in late April gave 45,000 workers – including nurses, physicians, respiratory therapists, environmental services workers, housekeepers, and people in outpatient and corporate roles – a lump sum bonus payment of up to $2,500 and 1 week of paid time off. The money came out of the system’s general fund.

“As an organization, we want to continue to support, motivate and inspire our team members,” said Northwell President and CEO Michael Dowling in a statement at the time.

On April 2, New York–Presbyterian Hospital’s chair of the department of surgery, Craig Smith, MD, announced that the facility was “providing a $1,250 bonus for everyone who has worked in or supported the COVID-19 front lines, for at least 1 week.”

Advocate Aurora, with 15 hospitals and 32,000 employees in Wisconsin, said in early April that it was giving increases of $6.25-$15.00 an hour at least through the end of May.

A version of this article originally appeared on


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