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Past Event

Beyond giving thanks: Pay, protections, and policies frontline essential workers still need

Past Event

The United States has entered a third peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, with cases spiking across the country. As we begin this even deadlier phase of the pandemic, the country’s 50 million frontline essential workers are among the most vulnerable. Are they receiving adequate support for the acute hazards they face on the job?

On Monday, November 23, the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program hosted an event examining the call for frontline essential workers to receive hazard pay and prospects for additional protections and supportive policies at the federal, state, and local level. The event began with opening remarks from Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). David M. Rubenstein Fellow Molly Kinder moderated a panel of frontline workers, discussing their experiences and what resources are needed to ensure their safety and provide a just wage for their work. The program concluded with remarks from Mary Kay Henry, president of the Service Employees International Union, about how labor is approaching the issue.

Viewers submitted questions by emailing or tweeting to @BrookingsMetro with #EssentialWorkers.


Keynote remarks

Panel discussion

Sabrina Hopps

Housekeeper - Acute Care Facility (Washington, D.C.)

Jeffrey Reid

Meat Clerk - Giant (Greater Washington, D.C. area)

Fireside chat

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