Government should mandate more pay | Letter to the editor

Posted 9/8/21

Given the recent surge in COVID cases and the troubles in staffing our front-line workers it is far past time for our local governments to step up. 

Front-line workers are risking much and …

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Government should mandate more pay | Letter to the editor

Posted

Given the recent surge in COVID cases and the troubles in staffing our front-line workers it is far past time for our local governments to step up. 

Front-line workers are risking much and are now overworked. They need to be compensated for their efforts to make the economy of Jefferson County and Port Townsend work. 

Keep in mind that McDonalds is offering $15 per hour to start and they are having difficulties finding staff. Keep in mind that the front page of last week’s paper shows that even high school kids are unwilling to babysit for less than $15 per hour. 

If you don’t want to burn out front-line workers, create a required wage that brings people back to the workforce, that shows them you value them. County commissioners and city council - why have you not initiated an ordinance requiring hazard pay for front-line workers? Seattle has done it and got sued. The judge threw out the lawsuit.

Bellingham has done it. Why, in one of the most “liberal” counties and towns - one that has gone big for Democrats in a long time - have you not raised minimum wage or instituted hazard pay? I would like to hear from you as well as any candidates running for office.

I would suggest that during our emergency times, where the governor has extended a mask moratorium, you recognize the crucial role the front-line workers provide. This recognition should, at least, be an ordinance that says “during COVID, front-line workers should earn a minimum wage of $17 per hour.” This should be done immediately.

Show you really represent all of the citizens and not just a local version of only representing the top 10 percent of Jefferson County, show you care about everyone.

David Johnson
PORT TOWNSEND

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