Murray Cosponsors Aviation Worker Relief Package

Sep 21 2001

"The Displaced Workers Assistance Act," introduced Friday, would provide 52 weeks of financial assistance, 18 months of health care, access to training programs

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) co-sponsored The "Displaced Workers Assistance Act" today to provide assistance to airline and aircraft manufacturing workers displaced by the economic downturn resulting from the recent hijackings.

The bill would provide 52 weeks of direct financial assistance, pay for 18 months of COBRA health coverage, and provide access to training programs for affected workers. The training provision would also apply to workers who are "under threat" of being laid off. The overall cost would be $3.75 billion over 2 years.

"While we have supported airlines affected by last week's tragedy, we cannot forget the workers who will lose their jobs," said Murray. "They work just as hard, their utilities cost just as much, and their patriotism is just as strong as the executives for whom they work. The nearly 30,000 Boeing employees affected by airline cutbacks form the backbone of the industry and deserve our support in this difficult time."

Murray has been working to draft this legislation since the Boeing announcement that 30,000 employees would be laid off.

The bill was sponsored by Sen. Jean Carnahan (D-Mo.) and co-sponsored by Sen. Murray (D-Wash.), Sen. Daschle (D-S.D.), Sen. Kennedy (D-Mass.), Sen. Cantwell (D-Wash.), Sen. Allen (R-Va.), Sen. Wellstone (D-Minn.), Sen. Durbin (D-Ill.), Sen. Cleland (D-Ga.), Sen. Rockefeller (D-W. Va.), and Sen. Dayton (D-MN).