Detroit paying frontline workers extra $800 a month in hazard pay

The mayor announced Friday the city will be paying frontline workers an extra $800 a month in hazard pay for their hard and risky work during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Mayor Mike Duggan said this hazard pay will be issued to those with public-facing jobs in six different departments starting Monday, which is over 1,000 workers.

The mayor said 200 Detroit workers on the front lines have been diagnosed with COVID-19 so far. The city has lost three members of the police force, one firefighter, one DDOT driver and two inspectors at the building safety and engineering department.

RELATED: Detroit bus driver dies of COVID-19 weeks after complaining of passenger's cough

Not once has any employee said if you don’t pay me more, I’m not coming to work, Duggan said.

The city has given those frontline workers who were sick or quarantined full pay since the pandemic began shutting things down. Now the city will give those public-facing workers, from police and fire to the water department, hazard pay for their work. A full list of who qualifies will be posted on the website shortly, Duggan said.

Detroit Fire Department1


Detroit police officers have been given free masks to offer to anyone they might see without one in the city.

Duggan said an officer might stop a Detroiter and positively offer a mask if they would like one -- they are not required to take one.

“They’re just wanting to be helpful,” the mayor said.

RELATED: Masks to be available on DDOT buses to ensure driver, rider safety


Denise Fair, Chief Public Health Officer of the Detroit Health Department, said as of Wednesday, there are 6,228 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 326 deaths.


Duggan is asking for more Abbott Laboratories instant testing machines. The city of Detroit was initially given five machines and 5,000 COVID-19 testing kits to combat the virus. But they are running those five machines for 18-20 hours a day and the mayor is concerned how long they will last.

The mayor is asking anyone, from office managers to physician's practices, who can spare their Abbott testing machine for 3-4 weeks to please call the city.

RELATED: Detroit approved for breakthrough, instant coronavirus test kits


The mayor announced Friday that the skate park at Riverside Park in southwest Detroit has been shut down. He said this has been an area where the social distancing guidelines are regularly being ignored.

“I’m not going to have police cars having to make the same runs over and over,” he said

Precinct commanders say though, that citizens are heeding social distancing warnings at the parks and ask those not to be shut down. 

But the mayor did say police have noticed issues with groups of kids from 10-12 years old gathering in large groups, and ask that parents please make sure this doesn’t happen.