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Monday, December 6, 2021

Stimulus Check Update: $600 For Front-line Workers

Tom Vilsack, the Secretary for Agriculture, recently announced that a competitive grant funding worth $700 would be sent as a stimulus check payment. This would form part of the new Farm and Food Workers Relief grant program which has been created to help workers in the meatpacking industry and farmers with safety costs and pandemic-related health problems.

The announcement took place in a press call with the United Farm Workers Foundation Executive Director Diana Tellefson Torres, and the President of the United Food and Commercial Workers International, Marc Perrone. Also, in order to recognize the hardships faced and the costs are borne by grocery workers at the front-line, a sum of $20 million has been kept aside for another pilot program that would support grocery workers. 

Stimulus Check Program For Farm Workers

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The new stimulus check program is going to be funded by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 and will also form a part of the Build Back Better efforts of the USDA to recover from and respond to the pandemic. The program has its aims set at providing relief to farmers, meatpacking workers for the expenses that were incurred due to the pandemic.

This relief will try to defray the costs for necessary and reasonable personnel, family, or any living expenses which have been related to the COVID pandemic, such as costs for PPEs, dependent care, and the expenses which have been associated with establishing quarantines.

Secretary Vilsack also mentioned that while the country did celebrate the economic and social achievements of the country’s workers during Labor Day, it must also be recognized that the farm workers and the meatpacking workers have been undergoing some severe unprecedented challenges. Therefore, the stimulus check grant program is simply another component of the efforts of the Administration in order to ensure assistance that would alleviate the suffering felt by the pandemic. 

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The UFW Foundation, it was reported, worked tirelessly to bring about legislation that would help the USDA create a stimulus check program that would support farmworkers.  

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