GURNEE, Ill. – State Rep. Joyce Mason, D-Gurnee, is applauding the passage of Senate Bill 471, a measure to impose stricter penalties on individuals who assault front-line employees at places like grocery stores, pharmacies and gas stations.

“Every COVID-19 mitigation measure that’s been put into place is backed up by science and has been shown to lower infection rates, yet there are still many people who disagree with that guidance and choose not to follow it,” Mason said. “Rather than directing their concerns about social distancing or face coverings to the appropriate government officials, some of these individuals have wrongfully decided to take their frustrations out on essential workers.”

Under Senate Bill 471, an incident of assault on an essential worker while he or she is on the job would be classified as aggravated battery. The legislation comes in response to statewide reports of physical attacks on front-line employees, often fueled by opposition to the state’s efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19. Senate Bill 471 was approved with bipartisan support in both chambers.

“Essential workers put themselves at risk every day to keep our community up and running during this crisis. They deserve to be recognized and honored for their work, not disparaged and attacked,” Mason said. “This bill offers much-needed protection for employees on the front lines of this outbreak, and I look forward to seeing this important legislation signed into law.”

Rep. Joyce MasonRep. Joyce Mason

61st District

Visit Rep. Joyce Mason’s website

Springfield Office:
247-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8151
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Suites LL 60
Gurnee, IL 60031
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