Inslee announces $40 million  fund to help undocumented workers

WASHINGTON- This week Governor Jay Inslee announced several relief funds that will help many agricultural workers in the state including undocumented immigrants.

The first fund is a $40 million fund for undocumented workers who can't receive unemployment compensation or stimulus checks due to their status. The second fund is a $3 million one through the Food Production Paid Leave Program. This fund will benefit  food production workers regardless of their immigration status. Both funds are incentives for workers to stay home if they are sick without fears of not being able to provide for their families. 

"We know COVID is taking a disproportionate toll on immigrants and communities of color certainly in the agricultural industry," said Inslee. "These communities and their labors contribute far more than the $40 million dollars put into this fund, the non profit Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy estimates that these undocumented workers contribute $300 million in state local taxes annually just in our state, so this is the right thing to do, the smart thing to do and the healthy thing to do for everyone in our community." 
The $40 million fund will be distributed in the fall once the state finds an entity to do so. The $3 million fund will be run through the Department of Commerce to make sure businesses will provide sick leave to workers who have to quarantine. The department will then reimburse the business.

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