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Kaine, Colleagues Introduce Bill To Protect Quarantined Workers From Being Fired Or Punished By Employers Amid Coronavirus

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, joined Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) in introducing legislation to prohibit employers from firing, punishing, or otherwise discriminating against a worker who is quarantined or isolated—or who is caring for a family member in quarantine or isolation—amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“Especially during this public health emergency, we need to ensure that workers have strong protections that will help them care for themselves and their loved ones,” said Kaine. “Americans should never have to choose between keeping their job and taking care of their health.”

The Senators believe workers need a clear set of federal rules so Americans are reassured and more likely to follow quarantine or isolation recommendations if they know they’ll still have their jobs and won’t get fired for doing so. Senator Kaine has also cosponsored legislation to provide paid sick days immediately to workers in light of the coronavirus crisis and in preparation for future public health emergencies.

This legislation is also supported by Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Bob Casey (D-PA), and Bernie Sanders (I-VT).

You can access text of the bill here.