x
Breaking News
More () »

Sen. Sherrod Brown proposes 'Heroes Fund' to raise essential workers' pay during coronavirus outbreak

The proposal would increase workers' pay by $25,000 until the end of the year.

WASHINGTON — Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown unveiled plans for the COVID-19 "Heroes Fund," which would aim to raise pay for essential workers across the country during the coronavirus outbreak. 

The fund, which Brown hopes to include in the next Senate relief package, would give essential workers a raise of $25,000 (equivalent to about $13 an hour) and would include a $15,000 recruitment incentive for health and home care workers and first responders.

"Many of the people in the service sector are overlooked in this country," Brown said in a midday press conference via phone. "They're the ones who keep our society together during this pandemic. If we're going to say, 'you're essential,' their paycheck should reflect that."

Under this proposal, any pay raises would remain until the end of 2020. 

During the conference call, Brown said that senators would work toward establishing a definition of "essential workers" for the purposes of the Heroes Fund, but specifically mentioned healthcare workers, grocery store workers, and those working in public transportation.

"Think about the anxiety they're going through," Brown said of people who still have to go to work during the outbreak. 

While this would be a federally funded program, Brown said he hopes larger corporations will invest to provide premium pay as well.

You can read the full proposal here.

RELATED: Coronavirus live updates: CDC eyeing potential guidance change for people exposed to virus

RELATED: Ohioans urged to continue stay-at-home precautions as models suggest progress in coronavirus battle: 'We can't let up'

RELATED: VERIFY: The stimulus checks won't impact your tax refund next year

RELATED: Cuyahoga County health officials provide coronavirus updates

RELATED: CDC looks at changing guidelines to get asymptomatic people back to work

RELATED: Passover in the age of coronavirus

RELATED: Ohio Hospital Association model projects hospitalization numbers for state's coronavirus peak

RELATED: Here's how coronavirus cases have grown in Ohio each day: Timeline

RELATED: Coronavirus & Ohio: The latest number of confirmed cases