Gov. Whitmer signed an order ensuring compensation eligibility for COVID-19 frontline workers

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LANSING, Mich.– Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-125 on Wednesday, which clarifies Workers’ Disability Compensation Act (WDCA) eligibility during the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency.


It replaces emergency rules issued by the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity in March 2020. Under the order, individuals who work as correctional officers, medical staff, and cafeteria staff who serve prisoners will be entitled to worker’s compensation if they suffer a personal injury as a result of COVID-19.


“The men and women who work at correctional facilities across our state should be able to report for work knowing they will be covered under Michigan’s Workers’ Disability Compensation Act if they are injured or disabled as a result of COVID-19, and this executive order ensures they are eligible for that much-needed coverage,” Whitmer said. “The real heroes of this crisis are the medical workers, first responders, and other essential workers — like correctional officers — who are putting their lives on the line for us every day. We must all continue to do our part to protect them and their families.”


Under the Executive Order, a coronavirus-response worker who is confirmed as COVID-19 positive on or after March 18 should be presumed to have suffered a “personal injury,” as defined by the WDCA.


The order is in effect during the declared states of emergency and disaster orders.