Biden to Sign Executive Orders to Boost Pandemic Aid, Expand Federal Worker Protections – The Wall Street Journal

WASHINGTON—President Biden will sign an executive order Friday aimed at swiftly delivering more relief to low-income families and unemployed workers as the White House prepares to convince skeptical Senate Republicans to back its $1.9 trillion coronavirus legislation.

Mr. Biden will direct agencies across the government to take immediate steps to enhance federal benefits, such as expanding food assistance, improving distribution of stimulus checks and clarifying that workers may refuse jobs with unsafe working conditions and still qualify for unemployment benefits, administration officials said Thursday.

A White House spokeswoman said the administration expects action to be taken in the coming days.

“These actions are not a substitute for comprehensive legislative relief,” Brian Deese, the director of Mr. Biden’s National Economic Council, said Thursday. “But they will provide a critical lifeline to millions of American families. And that’s why the president is going to act quickly on these steps.”

Mr. Biden also intends to issue a second order that would advance Democratic priorities favorable to workers. It would restore collective bargaining power for federal workers; revoke an order from former President Donald Trump that exempted some federal positions from competitive hiring procedures and civil-service protections; and direct agencies to start planning for a $15 minimum wage for federal workers and contractors.

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Biden to Sign Executive Orders to Boost Pandemic Aid, Expand Federal Worker Protections – The Wall Street Journal

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