The Colorado legislature on Friday approved legislation aimed at preventing the doxxing of healthcare workers and other employees.
The state Senate passed House Bill 1041 in a 23-9 final vote on Friday, following the state House of Representatives’ 52-10 approval last month. The bill will now be sent to Governor Jared Polis for final review.
If passed, the bill would add healthcare workers – along with code enforcement officers, children’s representatives and animal control officers – to the list of people who can request that their personal information being removed from government websites after receiving security threats. Personal information includes personal addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses.
“People deserve to do their jobs without fearing for their lives, their safety and the safety of their families,” said Senator Joann Ginal, D-Fort Collins, sponsor of the Senate bill. “It’s amazing what can happen to someone who just wants to do their job. It’s really easy to be able to intimidate and threaten someone just by browsing the internet.
This legislation comes as 31% of hospital nurses in September 2021 said they had experienced an increase in workplace violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a National Nurses United survey.
Although the bill received bipartisan support, all of the lawmakers who voted against the bill are Republicans.
Some opponents have already denounced the bill because they argue that privacy should be afforded to everyone equally; however, these privacy protections are already in place for other workers, including law enforcement.
The bill would not prohibit access to records by county officials or certain other persons if the access is related to a real estate matter. Under the bill, threats would include any threats made to the individual’s family as well as their own life.