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Applications for frontline worker pay now open

Eligible Minnesota residents have until July 22 to apply for their share of $500 million put aside for those deemed essential as the pandemic swept the state.

ST PAUL, Minn. — The application process opened Wednesday, June 8 for frontline workers to claim their share of $500 million set aside by legislators as so-called "hero pay" for those deemed essential during the pandemic. 

Eligible workers, those employed in health care, child care, school, food service, public transit, long-term care, building service, emergency response, retail, and manufacturing, have until July 22 to apply. They will receive anywhere from $750 to $1,500 each, depending on the number of people who apply.

Only 48 hours after the application opened, nearly 372,000 applications have been submitted, according to the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry.

A website set up for the applications reminds frontline workers that the $500 million is not being awarded on a first come, first served basis. Funds will be divided among approved candidates following the application period, a 15-day appeals period and another time frame during which those appeals will be reviewed. 

The Frontline Worker Pay Law also requires that employers in a frontline work sector inform employees about the law and money that may be available to them. 

Answers to frequently asked questions about the program can be found on a webpage set up by the state.

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