SALEM, OR (KPTV) – Governor Kate Brown announced the launch of a new source of financial assistance for agriculture workers who must quarantine to slow the spread of COVID-19.
The Oregon Worker Quarantine Fund will offer up $1,290 in financial support to farmworkers 18 and over who self-quarantine for 14 days after being exposed to the coronavirus regardless of their immigration status.
The fund is administered by the Oregon Worker Relief Coalition, working in collaboration with state agencies and the Governor's Office.
“This pandemic has exacerbated disparities in our systems that already existed—especially for low-income communities, rural communities, immigrants, and communities of color,” said Brown in a statement. “Oregonians working in agriculture and food processing are providing a vital service, ensuring families continue to have food on their tables and grocery store shelves during this pandemic. And yet, the nature of this work puts agricultural and food processing workers at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19."
The Quarantine Fund was designed as a policy centered on the lived experience of Oregon’s agricultural workers who make an average of $24,200 per year and cannot afford to take time off if they are exposed to the coronavirus.
“Many in our state’s agricultural workforce are immigrants who have been left out of federal relief programs, creating additional financial stress for families,” said Reyna Lopez, Executive Director at PCUN, Oregon's Farmworker Union.”
To be eligible, an individual must be:
- 18 years of age or older
- An agricultural worker or farmworker
- Having to quarantine for 14 days after an exposure to COVID-19
- Diagnosed with COVID-19
- Seeking medical care or taking care of a family member due to COVID-19
Agricultural workers can apply for relief through local community-based organizations here or by calling 1-888-274-7292.
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