REFERENCE TITLE: employee protections; public health-related pandemic




State of Arizona

House of Representatives

Fifty-fifth Legislature

First Regular Session





HB 2857


Introduced by

Representatives Terán: Andrade, Bolding, Butler, Cano, DeGrazia, Fernandez, Friese, Hernandez A, Hernandez D, Hernandez M, Jermaine, Meza, Pawlik, Powers Hannley, Rodriguez, Salman, Stahl Hamilton





amending Title 23, chapter 2, Arizona Revised Statutes, by adding article 4; relating to employment practices.





Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:

Section 1. Title 23, chapter 2, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding article 4, to read:


START_STATUTE23-251. Definitions

In this article, unless the context otherwise requires:

1. "Commission" means the industrial commission of Arizona or its successor agency or any other agency the governor designates to implement this article.

2. "Employ" has the same meaning prescribed in section 23-362.

3. "Employee" has the same meaning prescribed in section 23-362.

4. "Employer" has the same meaning prescribed in section 23-362.

5. "Personal protective equipment":

(a) Means all of the following:

(i) Protective equipment for the eyes, face, head and extremities.

(ii) Protective clothing.

(iii) Respiratory devices.

(iv) Protective shields and barriers.

(b) Includes all of the following:

(i) N95 and other filtering facepiece respirators.

(ii) Elastomeric air-purifying respirators with appropriate particulate filters or cartridges.

(iii) Powered air-purifying respirators.

(iv) Disinfecting and sterilizing devices and supplies.

(v) Medical gowns and apparel.

(vi) Face masks.

(vii) Surgical masks.

(viii) Face shields.

(ix) Gloves.

(x) Shoe coverings.

(xi) Any other equipment identified by or otherwise necessary to comply with health and safety laws, standards and rules.

6. "Retaliatory action" means the discharge, suspension, demotion or penalization of or discrimination against an employee or any other adverse employment action taken against an employee in the terms and conditions of employment. END_STATUTE

START_STATUTE23-252. Emergency declaration for a public health-related pandemic; employer protection policies and practices; notice

A. If the governor proclaims a state of emergency for a public health-related pandemic pursuant to title 26, chapter 2, an employer shall adopt and implement reasonable policies or practices to protect its employees and customers in accordance with applicable published guidance relating to the public health-related pandemic issued by a federal or state agency.

B. An employer shall post notices in the workplace, in a format specified by the commission, notifying employees of the employer's policies or practices to protect its employees and customers during a public health-related pandemic and notifying employees of their rights under this article. END_STATUTE

START_STATUTE23-253. Personal protective equipment

If recommended in published guidance issued by a federal or state agency relating to a public health-related pandemic, an employer shall supply appropriate personal protective equipment to each employee it employs at no cost to the employee.  All personal protective equipment provided under this section shall be new and unexpired. END_STATUTE

START_STATUTE23-254. Whistleblower protections

An employer may not take any retaliatory action against any employee because the employee does any of the following:

1. Refuses to perform work when the employee, in good faith, reasonably believes a violation of employer's adopted policies or practices relating to a public health-related pandemic would create a hazard to the employee, any fellow employee or any customer.

2. Reports to a supervisor, public body, news media outlet or social media forum any activity, policy or practice of an employer that the employee, in good faith, reasonably believes would risk the health, safety or welfare of an employee or customer in violation of any law, rule or policy or practice adopted under this article. END_STATUTE

START_STATUTE23-255. Enforcement; rules; civil penalty

A. The commission may enforce and implement this article and may adopt any rules consistent with this article to do so.

B. Any employee or customer may file an administrative complaint with the commission charging that an employer has violated this article as to any employee or customer.

C. A civil action to enforce this article may be maintained in a court of competent jurisdiction by a law enforcement officer or by any private party injured by a violation of this article.

D. Any employer that violates the implementation, posting or other requirements that the commission establishes under this article is subject to a civil penalty of at least $250 for a first violation, and at least $1,000 for each subsequent or wilful violation and, if the commission or court determines appropriate, may be subject to special monitoring and inspections. END_STATUTE

START_STATUTE23-256. Other laws

All pay and protections provided for by this article are in addition to all other protections required by law. END_STATUTE