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Employers and insurance companies are insisting employees, even those directly exposed to the virus, can’t prove they got sick at work.
The New York State Workers Compensation Board was established to help injured workers, but one Poughkeepsie family has been in a two year battle to get the benefits they say they are owed.
Kanye Khalid Green is one step closer to receiving the workers compensation benefits he believes was owed to him after his father’s death.
After his father passed away, all Kanye Khalid Green had left of him were some pictures, a collection of books and 38.8 weeks of disability payments.
In New York City, more than 23,000 people have most likely died from COVID-19, and the deaths have been concentrated in low-income neighborhoods. About 19 percent of the city’s population lives in poverty.
Workers on the front-lines of COVID-19 have been getting sick from those in their care — and some employers are discouraging them from seeking workers comp benefits that would come from insurance companies. Many of these insurers have stashed billions in profits from the private workers comp system over the years.
A security guard at a homeless shelter in New York City, making just above minimum wage at $16 an hour, is diagnosed with COVID-19. Can he absolutely prove he got it at work? He cannot. Should that disqualify him from receiving Worker’s Compensation to cover his salary during his illness? No.
As thousands of people on the front lines of the pandemic have been exposed to the coronavirus, including some succumbing to the illness, labor groups are calling on New York to guarantee workers compensation benefits for those exposed to COVID-19 on the job.
The New York Workers’ Compensation Alliance is calling on the state government to guarantee that workers’ compensation will include COVID-19 workplace exposure for all workers.