As you know, there are a number of wage replacement programs available to you including, administrative leave, (CARES) EPSLA, and the NY State NYSCPSL. These programs were implemented on different dates with slightly different eligibility requirements and rates of wage replacement. This has caused some confusion amongst our members and in some instances has been misapplied by the Authority. If you have been quarantined and/or contracted COVID-19 and were forced to use your accrued leave to cover the absence we ask that you contact your chairperson so that we can verify that you were paid correctly.
We have filed a grievance regarding the MTA’s application of the 10-day paid administrative leave for members who have been quarantined more than once due to their close contact with an employee who has tested position of COVID-19. The Authority is taking the position that administrative leave for this purpose only applies once to each employee. We disagree with their position. An arbitration hearing was held and at the direction of the arbitrator the parties are currently trying to come to an agreement on this issue. If you have been quarantined more than once for being in close contact with an employee who has tested positive for COVID-19 and were forced to use your accrued leave balances to cover your quarantine please contact your chairperson immediately.
It has been our position that any member who has contracted COVID-19 and was currently working before they tested positive for the virus the presumption is that you contract it on the job and is therefore a work-related illness. Any members who have tested positive for COVID-19 should contact Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano to discuss their case.
In April we signed an agreement with the Authority that included our members in the 500k line of duty death benefit. In May the Governor signed into law the COVID-19 Death Benefit legislation granting new accidental death benefits to the beneficiaries of members who died after contracting COVID-19. In July these benefits were added to the OA Pension Plan and the MTA DB Pension Plan.