Rep. Payne, Jr. Helps First Responders and Frontline Workers during Pandemic

April 22, 2021
Press Release

Media Contact:  Patrick Wright   --

Washington, D.C. — Rep. Donald M. Payne, Jr. introduced two bills yesterday to get hazard pay for federal workers who stayed on the job through the COVID-19 pandemic and modern equipment for the nation’s first responders. 

“Millions of Americans have stayed on the job to protect and provide essential services through this pandemic and we need to support them for their efforts,” said Rep. Donald M. Payne, Jr.  “They are making tremendous sacrifices to be on the front lines during our public health crisis.” 

The first bill, the Hazardous Pay for Frontline Workers Act, allows federal workers to qualify for hazard pay under certain conditions.  The workers qualify if they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 directly or exposed to someone who has been exposed to someone else with COVID-19 in the course of their job duties.  The second bill, the First Responder Access to Innovative Technologies Act, amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to exempt emergency equipment with breakthrough technologies from a cumbersome approval process.  This will make sure first responders have the most effective and innovative products available to do their jobs.