The world as we know it has changed. Schools have closed their doors indefinitely and stadiums have gone quiet. In some cities, a mandatory quarantine has been imposed, with citizens unable to leave their homes unless it’s necessary.
With all of these changes, it’s easy to worry about what comes next – especially when it comes to your job. According to a Phoenix employment lawyer, your job”… allows you to pay your bills, live in a safe home and provide necessities for your family. It can be a source of pride, and reflect many years of dedication.”
Many employees have transitioned to remote workers in order to practice social distancing. But what happens if you have a job that can’t be done remote? Or, now have children at home from school with no option for daily childcare? Due to numbers of COVID-19 cases increasing every day, the House recently passed the H.R.6201 Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Here is what you need to know:
What Does the Families First Coronavirus Response Act Include?
- Tax credits for paid sick/family/medical leave: This tax credit applies to employees that are sick or quarantined, with a lesser amount applied to employees caring for a sick relative or for a child whose school or child care center has closed. Self-employed individuals are also eligible for tax credits during this outbreak.
- COVID-19 testing coverage: According to the bill, private healthcare plans will provide coverage for the diagnostic COVID-19 test, along with the provider, urgent care, and emergency room visits. Reimbursement will also be provided for those without health insurance who have been tested and received services.
- Funding for nutrition assistance programs: Under this bill, state plans can provide assistance to children who would receive free or reduced priced meals at school during the closure. Also, there are specifically designated funds for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC) and the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
- Emergency transfers for unemployment compensation: A total of $1 billion in emergency grants has been allotted for processing and paying unemployment benefits.
- Job-protected leave: Employees (who have been employed for at least 30 days) of employers with less than 500 employees or government employees are allowed to take a leave of 30 days of job-protected leave. This leave can be used for caring for an at-risk family member, child care if their school or child care center has been closed due to the Coronavirus, or for quarantine.
- COVID-19 diagnostic testing for veterans: The funds provided in this bill will allow for veterans receiving care through Medical Community Care or Medical Services to get tested.
- Funding for the Senior Nutrition Program: This bill will allow for an additional 25 million home delivered and pre-packaged meals for low-income seniors with chronic illnesses and disabilities.
How Will H.R. 6201 Lessen The Impact of The Coronavirus
This bill, which was voted in 363-40, will help lessen the financial stress and anxiety of families and citizens who rely on government programs and were not prepared for this unprecedented outbreak. United States President Donald Trump has publicly voiced his support for this bill and the relief it will provide for many American citizens.
During the stressful and unpredictable days ahead, it’s important to follow the guidelines set by the government to slow down the infection rate. Stay inside, practice social distancing and wash hands thoroughly and often, similar to what you’d do during the flu season. Together, we can make a difference.