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DAWSON CREEK, B.C – Peace River South MLA Mike Bernier sounds off on the NDP government as around 15,000 B.C. front-line workers still await pandemic pay.

“Front-line workers have made incalculable sacrifices throughout this pandemic, working to keep people safe and healthy and to keep our province running. However, more than 15,000 workers throughout B.C. who were told they’d receive money months ago, are still waiting to see any sign of the promised relief,” says Bernier, the BC Liberal Critic for Finance, in a statement on Monday.

Many frontline workers were promised $4 an hour increase in May.  The B.C. Government and Service Employees Union said some workers would receive the cheques in the new year, as reported by CTV in December.

The funding was supposed to benefit around 250,000 workers for hours worked from March to July.

The provincial and the federal governments funded the bump in pay, which is intended for workers in hospitals, jails, long-term and assisted living facilities, safe injection sites and supportive housing.

The province is responsible for distributing the funds.

“The NDP has apologized for delays, but an apology is a cold comfort to a worker who has been working long hours for months putting their safety at risk during a global pandemic. The NDP made a promise, and the responsibility falls on them to make it right with the 15,000 people who are still waiting for this support,’ says Bernier.

According to the ministry, as of December, 134,000 of the 250,000 eligible workers have received their pay-outs so far, totalling $211 million.

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