Protect Truckers Through Covid 19
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Truckers are working hard to haul the goods the American people need.
It is a travesty that Covid 19 legislation is grossly inadequate in addressing the unique needs of the long haul driver.
Long haulers are away from home far more often than they are at home. If a driver becomes ill with Covid 19, it is far more likely it will happen on the road. They are especially vulnerable, due to their dependence on truck stops, where they encounter the traveling public frequently. Additionally, they are in and out of shippers and receivers and rest areas regularly. This situation is declining, as rest areas and shippers/receivers are increasingly closing restrooms and instead installing Kybos.
At this time there is still no official guidance, nor assistance, for the long haul driver.
If drivers get sick, your shelves go bare.
Our nation's drivers should not have to risk financial catastrophe for themselves and their families, in addition to their increased risk of illness, for absolutely no compensation*, nor assistance, in the event they fall ill or test positive.
A minimum of 3 issues need addressed immediately.
1. Establishment of a hotline for drivers where they can receive guidance on what to do and where to go if they become ill when on the road. Due to the nature of their vehicle, up to 70 foot long and 80,000 pounds, they will likely require facilitation in regard to getting them to a clinic or hospital and later, possibly, to a motel or appropriate facility.
2. Drivers who become ill while in the course of their duties, who were forced to quarantine in a motel or other facility away from home, should be reimbursed 100% of all expenses for food, supply delivery and lodging. If a family member must travel to the truck driver, those travel expenses should be fully reimbursed.
3. Drivers who become ill in the course of their duties should be entitled to sick pay, commensurate with their average daily earnings, until such time as they are medically cleared to return to work. Additionally, a driver who tests positive, whether ill or not, but who is required to be quarantined, should also be entitled to sick pay.
This should apply to all drivers, no matter the number of employees their carrier employs, including owner operators. (edited for clarity 4/2/20)
Considering the disgusting pet pork projects allowed to pass, this protection for the American truck driver should not even be in question. This petition does not ask for hazard pay, raises or bonuses - it asks only for protection.
Truckers, friends and their families are millions strong and we're watching.
Do the right thing.
Thank you to all those who sign in support the American truck driver. We deeply appreciate you.
*ETA, 4/2/2020: Please see the 2nd update for more information about why the legislation passed thus far does not adequately provide sufficient protections for ALL truckers.
IMPORTANT UPDATE! 4/7/2020: Announced today is a proposal for hazard pay for essentials, including truck drivers. Although hazard pay is not what was asked for in this petition, this is a side-step in a direction that might address what we ARE asking for - sick pay & reimbursements for Covid related issues.
There's never been a more important time to reach out to your lawmakers and share, share, share. One part of the statement that is a little worrisome says, "The Heroes Fund would provide funding directly to eligible employers so they could then distribute the premium payments." Who is an eligible employer? The end goal of this petition is that ALL truckers are covered for illness. Keep your eye on this!
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