You are reading

Bill That Aims to Ensure COVID-19 Safety in The Workplace Passes

(Photo: Unsplash Kayla Speid)

April 22, 2021 By Ryan Songalia

A new bill that aims to protect workers from contracting airborne illnesses in the workplace—such as COVID-19—passed both the New York State Senate and Assembly this week.

Businesses, under the legislation called NY Hero Act, will be required to meet minimum safety standards to reduce the risk to workers following the outbreak of such diseases. If they fail to comply, they will be hit with fines.

The Departments of Labor and Health will be tasked with establishing the standards for businesses to follow, such as determining how much personal protective equipment for employees is needed and social distancing requirements and more.

Queens-based senator Michael Gianaris was the primary sponsor in the Senate, while Karines Reyes, of the Bronx, was the primary sponsor in the Assembly. The bill is awaiting Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign it into law.

“Too many workers have already sacrificed their health for our community’s benefit,” Gianaris, the Senate Deputy Leader. “The New York HERO Act honors their efforts by giving workers the tools to protect themselves while on the job.

State Senator Jessica Ramos, who chairs the Senate Labor Committee, was one of three Queens-based senators, alongside James Sanders Sr., who co-sponsored the bill.

“Throughout this pandemic, workers across our state have had to put their lives and the lives of their families at risk to keep New York running,” said Ramos. “It’s our turn to take care of them.”

The Queens-based legislators who co-sponsored the bill in the Assembly are Stacey Pheffer Amato, Nily Rozic, Zohran Mamdani, Brian Barnwell, Andrew Hevesi, Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, Catalina Cruz, Catherine Nolan, Jenifer Rajkumar and Daniel Rosenthal.

Among the labor unions, community and safety organizations supporting the bill are AFL-CIO, CWA District 1, New York State Nurses Association and the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union.

email the author: [email protected]
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

Brooklyn Academy of Music to spotlight art, activism, and voting rights at MLK Day tribute Jan. 16

The Brooklyn Academy of Music will memorialize Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with weekend of events leading up to the 37th annual MLK Tribute on Monday, Jan. 16.

The main event takes place on Monday when BAM staff, Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, civic leaders and community members will join together to hear a keynote speech from civil rights lawyer and law professor Sherrilyn Ifill and enjoy performances from Sing Harlem and Allison Russell.