Senator Bigham Supports Workers’ Compensation for COVID-19 Affected First Responders

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Senate passed legislation unanimously Tuesday making COVID-19 an occupational disease covered by workers’ compensation.

“As the daughter and sister of firefighters, I know that they put everything they have on the line to save people and this legislation makes sure that after they take care of all of us, that we can take care of them,” said Senator Karla Bigham (DFL-Cottage Grove). “This was a bipartisan priority, and I look forward to Governor Walz signing this into law as soon as possible, so our first responders have the protections they need.”

This will now provide access to workers’ compensation claims for a several occupations. This includes: licensed peace officers; firefighters; paramedics; nurses, healthcare workers, correction officers, and security counselors employed by the state or a political subdivision at a corrections, detention, or secure treatment facility; emergency medical technicians; health care providers, nurses, and assistive employees employed in a health care, home care, or long term care setting, with direct COVID-19 patient care or ancillary work in COVID-19 patient units; and workers who are required to provide childcare to first responders and health care workers under Executive Orders 20-02 and 20-19.

The legislation now moves to the Governor’s desk for his signature.

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Karla Bigham represents District 54 in the southeast Twin Cities metro, including parts of Dakota and Washington counties.

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