Senate Passes Bill to Protect Law Enforcement Officers and National Guard Facing COVID-19

HARRISBURG – Today the Senate approved a bill that would ensure law enforcement officers and National Guard members who contract COVID-19 can still receive compensation while quarantined or receiving treatment for the virus.

House Bill 1869 was amended to include language from Senator Regan’s Senate Bill 1106 that ensures that law enforcement officers, along with other first responders, are covered under the Pennsylvania Heart & Lung Act, should they need time off due to contracting, being tested for, or having to quarantine because of COVID-19.  Coverage would also be included for all medical and hospital expenses resulting from COVID-19. Benefits would be limited to no more than 60 days while the individual limits exposure to others and recovers from the virus.

Senator Regan, as Chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committee, was also instrumental in the inclusion of a provision to ensure similar protections for members of the National Guard that are called up to active state duty dealing with COVID-19. 

The bill would also allow EMS agencies to request waivers for staffing requirements due to a shortage of available staff.

“Our police and National Guard are interacting with the public 24/7 in order to protect the lives of all Pennsylvanians,” said Sen. Regan.  “In these uncertain times, it is paramount that we provide this important protection to those that protect us.”

House Bill 1869 now goes to the House of Representatives for its concurrence.

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