There's good news in store for some of Ontario's frontline workers. In an announcement this weekend, Premier Doug Ford announced that essential staff will be getting a $4 hourly pay rise, regardless of their current wage. Additionally, anybody working over 100 hours per month will be eligible to receive a lump sum payment. In total, some employees could actually earn an additional $3,560!

To honor the sacrifice and dedication of Ontario's frontline health care workers, the provincial government has announced a new “temporary pandemic payment.”

For eligible workers, hourly wages will be increased by $4, regardless of the employee's hourly wage.

For those working long hours, it gets even better. Some employees will also be able to claim a lump sum payment of $250 per month for each of the next four months.

According to the Ontario government's press release, this means that eligible staff members working an average of 40 hours per week will receive a total payment of up to $3,560.

Workers that are eligible for these pandemic payments include those working in long-term care homes, retirement homes, emergency shelters, and supportive housing.

The funding will also be available to people working in social services, congregate care settings, corrections institutions, and youth justice facilities, as well as those providing home and community care, and some staff in hospitals.

According to the release, the bonuses will also be available to staff providing frontline clinical services, along with those providing support services, such as cleaning and meal preparation.

The compensation is only a temporary measure, but is expected to “begin flowing immediately.”

Eligible workers will be able to claim the funding for up to 16 weeks.

For now, the funding does not seem to include people who work in grocery stores or private essential businesses.

In a statement about the pandemic payments, Premier Doug Ford explained, “during these dark days, the Ontario spirit continues to shine through with everyday acts of heroism, courage, and compassion by our frontline workers." 

"These people put themselves in harm's way to care for our sick and vulnerable citizens. I am truly grateful, as are the people of Ontario, for their service, and it's time we give something back to those who sacrifice so much day in and day out," Ford added.

On Friday, it was confirmed that Ontario now has more recovered cases of COVID-19 than active cases.

*This article's cover image is for illustrative purposes only.

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