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‘It’s very important to our family’ | $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill makes it through Senate

The approval of the bill means a third stimulus check could be coming your way.

WASHINGTON — COVID-19 relief could be on the horizon after the Senate narrowly passed a $1.9 trillion aid bill Saturday.

The approval of the bill means a third stimulus check could be coming your way that includes a one-time payment of $1,400.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of Maryland said the bill will be considered by the House on Tuesday with hopes to send it on to President Joe Biden early next week.

“It’s very important to our family,” Nyah Foster, a security officer in D.C., said. “We live paycheck to paycheck, and it helps us along the way with what if something happens and I'm no longer working. I'm fortunate enough to be one of the essential employees that are working but what happens if it's not, what happens with one of my buildings close down.”

The pandemic has brought uncertainty to families across the country, something President Joe Biden noted in his address Saturday.

“Millions of people out of work through no fault of their own. I want to emphasize that, through no fault of their own,” Biden said. “This plan will get checks out the door starting this month to the American people so desperately need the help men who are lying in bed at night, staring at the ceiling wondering will I lose my job if I haven't already. Will I lose my insurance, will I lose my home.”

Biden wants to have the plan approved by next Sunday when extra unemployment and pandemic aid are set to expire.

As for when you could see the $1,400, during the first round of stimulus checks in April 2020 it took about two weeks for the federal government to start distributing the money. It took around one week for the second round of checks, worth $600, in early January.

In both the House and Senate versions of the bill stimulus payments would go to Americans making $75,000 or less. Couples making up to $150,000 will get $2,800. There will also be $1,400 tacked on for each dependent in the household.

The proposed bill would also extend unemployment benefits of $300 a week through early September.

Funding in the proposed bill would also go toward vaccine distribution, small businesses, and state and local governments.

Lawmakers did agree to remove a $15 minimum wage hike, something Foster was hoping would have passed.

“I don’t put too much stock into the stimulus check because one minute they say you're getting it and the next minute they say you're not. You have to take it day by day, and you have to play it like you're playing the game of spades,” Foster said.

Credit: WUSA
Nyah Foster said she has two sons she's been working to keep safe during the pandemic.

Foster said during the last year she’s had to do a lot of adjusting to navigate new stresses at every turn spurred by the pandemic.

“You develop anxiety that you didn't know you had. You have to become resilient and you have to place yourself in a different atmosphere mentally so that you know how to take on day to day because your kids can't see your stress. They can't see the wary, you have to make sure they're still safe,” Foster said.

She said she has friends and coworkers who haven’t been able to work as a result of pandemic-related job loss, adding she knows others who are working and fearful of losing their job or getting sick.

“They're scared they might get sick and they have small children and so they're readjusting their life and their schedule according to what's needed so that the stimulus will help them a whole lot. It'll help my family as well.”

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