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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: September 25, 2020 03:06 PM
From: Representative Jeanne McNeill
To: All House members
Subject: COVID-19: Retail Workers Safety and Protections from Abuse
Imagine your typical workday before the Coronavirus pandemic.  Odds are that you never had to face the threat of verbal and physical assault for simply doing your job.  For many retail workers, this nightmare has become their new normal.  Every time they clock into work, they put their safety on the line for simply enforcing state-wide health mandates or store policies required during these tumultuous times.
Across the nation, some customers have been lashing out in protest to health mandates by destroying store displays, shouting at employees, and, in some cases, turning violent.  Retail workers are putting their safety at risk during the pandemic to provide a service.  They deserve our respect and gratitude.  As much as we can, we need to provide these workers a safe workplace.  Workers shouldn't have to worry about physical harm when enforcing health or safety guidelines for their store.
Given the rising cases of assault on retail workers, I plan on introducing a bill to protect them.  My bill would amend Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses), Section 2702 (Aggravated Assault), adding retail workers to the list of protected employees, thereby creating the offense of the assault of a retail workers.
As stewards of public safety, it is my hope that you will join me in this collective effort to protect the safety and security of Pennsylvanians.  Your consideration is greatly appreciated.