French President Emmanuel Macron has announced that home caregivers who have helped the elderly and the disabled during the coronavirus pandemic will receive a bonus of up to 1,000 euros ($ 1,174) by the end of the year .
During a visit to the city of Toulon, in southern France, on Tuesday, Macron paid tribute to around 320,000 caregivers who provided essential home services to 1.1 million people in the country.
He said the bonus would be funded by a package of 160 million euros ($ 188 million) from the state and local authorities.
The French government previously announced a bonus of up to 1,500 euros ($ 1,760) for health workers in hospitals and nursing homes working in areas most affected by the virus.
France, which has confirmed 30,294 coronavirus-related deaths since the start of the pandemic, has nearly brought the virus under control with a strict two-month national lockdown.
Yet the country is now experiencing an increase in viral infections, especially when young people congregate in cafes or dance parties and families get together for the holidays.
In an opinion prepared for the French government, the COVID-19 scientific council warned Tuesday against a possible “resumption of circulation of the virus at a high level” by September.
Prime Minister Jean Castex on Monday called on France “not to lower its guard” in order to avoid a new national lockdown.
“We are seeing an increase in the numbers of the epidemic, which should make us more alert than ever,” Castex said.
“I call on each French person to remain very vigilant. The fight against the virus obviously depends on the State, local communities, institutions, but also on each of us, ”he said.