In the wake of the deaths of fifty MTA bus and subway employees, MTA has reached an agreement with three of MTA’s largest unions under which MTA will pay half a million dollars to the families of employees killed by the corona virus.

TWU Local 100, which represents 40,000 city transit workers, began calling for line of duty benefits after the agency’s first COVID-19 death on March 26. “This COVID-19 death benefit is a recognition of the incredible contributions and sacrifices our workforce has made,” TWU International President John Samuelsen said in a statement.

MTA, which will pay the benefits from its annual operating budget, is reportedly working on similar agreements with the rest of its unions. And the agency has said the benefit will also extend to employees not represented by labor unions. “What our frontline workers have done during this pandemic is nothing short of heroic and we believe this agreement is another crucial step in recognizing their sacrifice,” MTA Chairman Pat Foye said in a

Transit worker families typically receive $50,000 if their loved one dies while in active service.