Frontline allowance not paid to volunteers for months!

During a Covid-19 drill in Hulhumalé | Photo: Mihaaru

Malé, Maldives – Maldives Health Protection Union (MHPU) have expressed concern over the fact that it has been many months since allowances were not given to the frontline volunteer workers in the Covid-19 pandemic.

MHPU tweeted that it was every frontline worker’s right, including the volunteers to get their pay after working for a set period of time. Covid-19 frontline workers have been working on shift basis from minimum 6 to 10 hours per day.

MHPU added that when the government promised to give allowance to frontline workers, it includes volunteers as well. Yet it has been many months since the volunteers have not received their allowances, they said.

The Finance Ministry website states that frontline workers are critical in the effort of protecting the health of individuals amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Doctors, nurses, lab technicians and all frontline workers have been working diligently and with great care while bearing unprecedented risk to combat Covid-19 in in the frontlines.

“COVID-19 Frontline Allowance” was introduced to incentivise frontline workers exposed to different levels of risk associated with the COVID-19 health protection efforts. These frontline workers have been grouped into 3 risk categories, which determine the value of allowance paid out.

The three tiers include high-risk with MVR 500/daily, medium risk with MVR 250/daily and low risk with MVR 200/daily to be paid to the frontline workers.

According to the Finance Ministry, MVR 128.24 million has been disimbursed to 11,290 frontline workers.

However, complaints have been raised by frontline workers upon not receiving the frontline allowance. MHPU called on the government to pay the frontline workers and volunteers for their services.