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Tyson is doubling bonuses and increasing health benefits for frontline workers. At least 8 have died of coronavirus and over 1,180 have been infected.

Protective barriers between Tyson Foods team members at the company's Berry Street plant in Springdale, Ark. April 24, 2020
  • Tyson Foods has doubled its "thank you bonus" pool from $60 million to $120 million; workers will receive $500 bonuses in early May and July.
  • The company also increased short-term disability leave to 90% of a worker's normal pay, which it offers instead of paid sick leave.
  • At least eight Tyson workers have died of COVID-19, and more than 1,180 have been infected.
  • President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday compelling meat processing plants to stay open.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Tyson Foods will double a previously announced "thank you bonus" for frontline workers and increase short-term disability pay.
A press release from Tyson said that the company will now offer $120 million — up from $60 million — in bonuses. Workers will get their first $500 bonus in early May, which was sooner than originally scheduled. The second will come in July.
"Team members who cannot come to work due to illness or childcare will continue to qualify, but bonus eligibility will depend on attendance," the press release said.
The company is also upping its short-term disability leave until June 30. It is now 90% of a worker's normal pay, up from 60%. Business Insider's Kate Taylor reported that Tyson offers short-term disability leave, but not paid sick leave, to workers being treated for coronavirus.
At least eight Tyson workers have died of COVID-19, and the company has had over 1,180 cases.
On April 22, Tyson indefinitely suspended operations at its plant in Waterloo, Iowa, Business Insider's Rhea Mahbubani reported. Almost 200 workers there tested positive for coronavirus.
"This pandemic is ever-evolving, and the decision to make these changes reflects our desire to continuously explore new ways of supporting our team members through this crisis," Mary Oleksiuk, executive vice president and chief human resources officer for Tyson Foods, said in the press release. "The safety and well-being of our people is our top priority as we work together to fulfill our critical role of feeding people across the country."
In an open letter on Sunday, Tyson Chairman John Tyson said that "millions of pounds of meat will disappear from the supply chain" as meat processing plants close.
On Tuesday night, President Donald Trump took executive action to order meat processing plants to remain open. The order classified meat processing as critical infrastructure under the Defense Production Act, the Associated Press reports.
"Such closures threaten the continued functioning of the national meat and poultry supply chain, undermining critical infrastructure during the national emergency," the order said.
SEE ALSO: Tyson says 'millions of pounds of meat will disappear' as more than 1,180 workers catch COVID-19, slaughterhouses shutter, and workers kill and discard unsold chickens
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