Oct 19, 2020

Michigan Gov. Enacts Emergency Rules Covering for Infected Front Line Workers

    LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed emergency rules to clarify workers’ compensation coverage for health care     employees and first responders who have tested positive for COVID-19.

    The emergency rules apply to workers in the medical industry, including hospitals, medical care facilities, and emergency medical services, as     well as law enforcement, fire safety, and others.

    These employees are presumed eligible for compensable personal injuries under the Workers’ Disability Compensation Act if they are     diagnosed with COVID-19, either by a physician or as the result of a presumed positive test result.

As exampled by Michigan Gov. Whitmer's action, advocacy efforts by the IAEP and other first responder organizations are making headway. Legislation being discussed around the nation today is a direct result of the hard work behind the scenes being done to create new disaster compensation language. 

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, emergency measures were rarely found in contracts or legislation regarding emergency services. Within a month of the outbreak, a disaster compensation package was in development by IAEP general counsel to protect members from the ongoing fallout of this crisis. Thus far, several states have signed emergency legislation giving temporary relief to first responders and other workers directly affected by the virus response. The IAEP is committed to expanding that band-aid approach into meaningful and lasting resources to support EMS professionals who put themselves in harms way each time they clock in. 

We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few; but we can't have both. - Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
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