Crisis due to COVID-19: Los Angeles will send 15 thousand workers on forced leave
On Wednesday, August 2, the city council of Los Angeles, California, declared a financial emergency and prepared a plan to take 15 employees on unpaid leave. This is because the city is grappling with the economic blow from the COVID-19 pandemic. About writes Fox Business.
Another 1 employees will be able to receive cash payments in the amount of $ 280 thousand as a one-time compensation for early retirement.
Mayor Eric Garcetti is expected to approve of such a move aimed at preventing direct layoffs.
Effective October 11, civil servants will be required to take up to 18 unpaid leave from work during the fiscal year that began in July. This means a 7% reduction in wages.
Police and firefighters are not affected by compulsory leave. In this case, civilian employees of these structures may also suffer.
On Wednesday, September 2, the city council rejected a petition to defer salary increases and allowances for police officers who were to receive a 2021% pay increase in January 3,25.
At a COVID-19 briefing, Garcetti was asked if he was ready to go on vacation himself.
“The leave applies to us as elected officials and to all civil servants, including those who work in our office. So yes, we are ready for this, ”he said. Garcetti mentioned that earlier this year he gave up two months' paycheck, the equivalent of a 6% cut.
“I am absolutely sure that we must set an example, otherwise we cannot demand more from people than they themselves are ready to do,” the mayor stressed.
The California government is grappling with the costs of trying to slow the spread of COVID-19. Months of freezing of business activities, unemployment and recession in the tourism sector had a strong impact on the budget.
It is unclear when Los Angeles will stabilize its financial condition. Revenues from local taxes and duties are estimated to fall by $ 400 million this year.
According to Bob Schunover, president of SEIU Local 721, a union for city workers, forced leave is illegal under employment contracts and will be vigorously contested. He recalled that civilian employees worked at COVID-19 testing centers and food banks.
“Calling urban workers heroes one day and taking money out of their family budgets the next is wrong,” concluded Schunover.
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