Essential workers sick with COVID-19 deserve workers' comp

The labor movement is working nonstop to protect the health and safety of all working people throughout Connecticut, and especially for our state’s essential workers who are on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

These courageous workers are keeping our state running during this public health emergency, often without adequate personal protective equipment and jeopardizing their health, and the health of their loved ones, in the process.

It’s hard to imagine what would happen to our state and our communities without these essential workers. Yet, too little has been done to protect them during this uncertain and precarious time.

With thousands of essential workers already having been exposed and potentially infected with the novel coronavirus, Gov. Lamont must immediately order a workers’ compensation presumption during the pandemic. This will allow these workers to receive important healthcare and wage benefits through the workers’ compensation system.

By issuing an executive order, Governor Lamont could create a presumption that the worker contracted the illness on the job. This would allow workers’ compensation claims to be processed in a timely manner and prevent these essential employees from having to go through a protracted appeals process while they are sick and struggling to recover.

Click here to continue reading Sal Luciano's op-ed in CT Viewpoints.