Opinion: The number is in – taxpayers will likely be paying state workers $1,000 for getting a COVID-19 booster shot

Elizabeth Hovde of the Washington Policy Center has several questions about the governor’s updated directive.

Elizabeth Hovde of the Washington Policy Center has several questions about the governor’s updated directive

Elizabeth Hovde
Washington Policy Center

In August, I wrote about Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee negotiating away a COVID-19 booster requirement that he placed on some state workers in June. He said the requirement would bring a public health benefit and “ensure the health of our workforce.” (Never mind that people contract and spread the disease — and can get sick and even die with COVID-19 — regardless of vaccination status. See COVID-19 outcomes by vaccination status recorded by King County here.)

Elizabeth Hovde
Elizabeth Hovde

I was pretty sure money would be involved, as a press release about the labor negotiation said Inslee’s updated directive “reflects feedback and recommendations from state employees and labor partners to pursue options for offering incentives for COVID-19 boosters instead of making them a requirement.” And now we know what we’re looking at. 

Union and newspaper reports tell us that under a tentative deal, Washington state employees will get $1,000 for receiving a COVID-19 booster shot. 

It will be interesting to see the details of the probable booster bonus. Will money go to those who already got a booster? Which booster shot will get workers cash? Do people receive one payment for each booster that’s been available? Two? Three? (I assume this will be a one-time money maker.) What about pregnant women and others taking a doctor’s advice not to receive a booster shot?

Forget about patient-centered health care. Government bribes and coercion apparently rule COVID times in Washington state. 

Most curious, if the booster was needed for public health, as Inslee led us to believe, why would he negotiate it away? Is it now not needed for public health or to ensure the safety of our workforce? Was it ever? And is the vaccine mandate going to be up for negotiation? 

The Washington State Labor Council notes that a Washington Federation of State Employees’ (WFSE) spokesperson says roughly 35,000 state employees will be impacted if the contract deal is approved by union members. WFSE also expects the booster bribe to be well utilized. This incentive is going to cost a bit. 

Read more about the tentative deal between the governor and WFSE in The Seattle Times.

Elizabeth Hovde is a policy analyst and director of the Centers for Health Care and Worker Rights at the Washington Policy Center. She is a Clark County resident.

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5 months ago

At this point t the information is everywhere about these jabs…and the new booster they are pushing like drug cartels is 2 mRNA messengers instead of 1 and this jab will be a sure death jab…so if these idiots want to play Russian roulette with their lives so be it…inslee is a murderer and wants to kill as many as possible in the state workforce and bring in his afghans and illegals and continue on to the socialist communism agenda and WEF agenda…his bio is on the website…is this what Americans want?! Hell no!!!!

5 months ago
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John Crowley
5 months ago

I worked for WA Dept. of Corrections. I spent 15 years at one position. I was fired for not taking the COVID vaccine. This was 10 months before retirement. I had to withdraw my deferred compensation to live on, ie, eat. I really don’t think Inslee or his government care about anyone.

Tracy Smith
Tracy Smith
3 months ago
Reply to  John Crowley

Sir, I was in the exact same situation as you. I had worked for WA. St. DOC for 32 years and was less than 5 months from retirement when I was forced to quit due to not taking their experimental jab. 32 years of faithful service and treated like garbage to be thrown out. 🙄
Not the way I had hoped to end my Corrections career.

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