NY State to give death benefits to families of front line workers

New York News

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — New York State will provide death benefits to families of front line workers whose deaths were the result of COVID-19.

“They showed up because I asked them to show up. They showed up because I required them to show up,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said.

It’s unclear where in the budget the money will come from. New York is expecting a $61 billion shortfall over the next four years.

“Anytime someone’s putting their life on the line, that needs to be recognized,” said Queensbury Nurse Shana Olson-Laake.

Olson-Laake provided relief at a Bronx-area hospital. She said the need for nurses wasn’t solely because of the number of patients flooding the hospitals, but because of the number of hospital staff becoming infected.

“When I got there, there was a nurse that just died that was a part of [the hospital’s] unit. They also lost a janitor,” Olson-Laake said.

Olson-Laake said people who go largely overlooked, like hospital’s housekeeping staff, should be included in the benefits as well.

Governor Cuomo also called for federal benefits for front line workers.

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