We have used our cash reserves to increase the lowest paid staff to a minimum $21 per hour wage, consistent with a “living wage” for NYC and well above minimum wage. We have given staff that must drive their own cars for agency business, extra gas allowance since January 1, 2022 when gas prices began to rise. We gave every staff member that remained working with us during the pandemic an extra day’s pay as a thank you. We continue to supply K-95 masks for all staff and participants and talking thermometers to participants that needed them. We provide Uber or Lyft rides when staff feel insecure or unsafe taking the subway to see participants in their homes. We offered a 6th paid work day for any professional (exempt) staff that wanted to work the extra day. We offer payment for webinars, conferences and training for all staff that wanted it, especially related to mental health and well being for staff.. We gave annual raises and merit increases every year on October 1, 2020, 2021 and 2022. We added incentive pay for all staff that supervise an intern. Hosting interns is a great way for us to recruit potential new staff. We continue to provide computers, printers, laptops, scanners for staff that work full time or part time at home. We have invested in upgrading our building security where theft and assaults have increased and added bear proof garbage cans at our residential vocational rehabilitation center where for the first time since we bought the property in 1951, we have a black bear that has been sighted on the 37 acre campus. All these expenses were off budget/unbudgeted but approved by the Board as necessary.