Just a reminder that #essentialworkers have been working straight through #COVID19 for the past four months and still have yet to receive anything more than the initial stimulus (for those who actually got one). I know for some it's hard to care about us...
... when your job may have permanently shut down and you're concerned about where to make a living wage once it's safe to return to work. I know it's stressful with the $600/week unemployment bonus coming to an end soon and not everyone who qualified even received it yet.
And I KNOW that there are other stressers to staying home for the better part of four months for those who have children or other expenses, for those who are at higher risk of catching COVID to begin with. But #essentialworkers never had the opportunities you were.
A lot of us were barely scraping by on our wages when COVID started but then lost one of two jobs or had hours cut. Even those who received a company-wide $2/hr temporary hike lost the extra income to hours that were snatched back to make up for it.
Many of us are high risk but were told we could not qualify for unemployment. Many of us also have children out of school that we have to pay extra childcare for, as well as educational assistance. Many of us have actually CAUGHT #COVID19 and had to...
... battle our bosses to be able to take the necessary time off for quarantine, or were expected to use vacation time to recover from an illness that we were 99% likely to have been exposed to at our essential jobs. And some never had vacay time to begin with so...
... we didn't earn any wages for multiple weeks while still being obligated to pay our monthly expenses. I know some who read this will think things like, "So what? At least you're working!" or "So what? You chose the job you have at the wage you make!"
But that's why I'm calling for compassion. I am personally someone who sees way beyond myself, empathizing with the stories and experiences of thousands of people I've met during the #COVID19 pandemic. This is about more than just me or just healthcare workers or just essentials.
It's about the entire working class standing together to fight an injustice. When the #government decided the unemployed should make $2400/month minimum, it was because they did the math and learned that was the average needed to live independently in the USA.
I am using this as a seque and not as an accusation. I'm not trying to take away what the unemployed have when, truth be told, we've all been long deserving of living wages and the gov't has now confessed they know what the minimum living wage is.
I'm asking for people to stand together, fight for all of us. Help #essentialworkers gain our seats at the same table with our own pieces of pie. I do not make $2400/month however gov't admits everyone should if we want to live. Most essentials don't meet that threshold.
At the end of all this, if you feel nothing for those hollowly described as "heroes", if you think we don't deserve more or if this thread otherwise rubs you the wrong way, I can only ask one thing: If you were in our shoes, wouldn't you want our support?
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