On Sunday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) wrote a letter to the Trump administration demanding paid sick leave requirements for workers impacted by COVID-19.
The Democratic leaders said that they were prompted to impose the demands after White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow mentioned on Friday that the administration was mulling tax breaks for airline and other travel industries as fear of the coronavirus puts a squeeze on international travel.
“In light of reports that the Trump administration is considering new tax cuts for major corporations impacted by the coronavirus, we are demanding that the administration prioritize the health and safety of American workers and their families over corporate interests,” Pelosi and Schumer wrote.
The letter included a list of demands aimed at assisting workers in the administration’s next response to the deadly coronavirus.
“Workers impacted by quarantine orders or responsible for caring for children impacted by school closures must receive paid sick leave to alleviate the devastating consequences of lost wages,” the Democrats asserted.
Other requests included protection measures for those who may be exposed to the illness in their line of work, along with unemployment insurance for workers who “may lose their jobs from the economic impacts of the epidemic.”
Pelosi and Schumer also urged the administration to facilitate access to anti-virus efforts for lower income Americans by conducting free testing and combating price gouging of medical supplies and treatment.
“The administration must move more quickly and seriously to address the severe impacts of the coronavirus on the financial security of America’s families,” they wrote.
As of Monday morning, President Donald Trump has not publicly responded to the letter. Instead, he has been firing off angry tweets complaining about the media’s coverage of his bungled response to the coronavirus.
The White House did not respond to request for comment at the time of publication.