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Breaking News: Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) Passes House; Presidential Approval Expected Shortly

Posted in Legislative Developments

The U.S. House of Representatives, as expected, passed the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act this afternoon.  The bill, which had already been approved by the Senate, now moves on to the White House, where the President is expected to sign the bill.  The bill’s summary and status can be found here.The roll call vote at 12:40 p.m. can be found here.   It passed overwhelmingly.  (Guess which Representative opposed it.)

The New York Times, through an AP report, has the immediate coverage:

Companies would no longer be able to use genetic information like a person’s predisposition for breast cancer, sickle cell or diabetes to make insurance or job decisions under a bill passed by Congress on Thursday.

The House voted 414-1 for the legislation a week after it passed the Senate on a 95-0 vote. The bill would bar health insurance companies from using genetic information to set premiums or determine enrollment eligibility. Similarly, employers could not use genetic information in hiring, firing or promotion decisions.

As I noted earlier this week, this bill is not expected to have a significant impact in Connecticut where there is already legislation on the books prohibiting discrmination based on genetic information.

  • http://freelibertarian.blogspot.com Mike Renzulli

    I find legislation like this to be asolutely abhorrent. The end result of so-called anti-discrimination legislation is nothing more than a vicious desire for power and control.
    Insurance companies and employers should be free to hire, fire & insure with whomever they want. Such laws like this unjustly assume that people have a ‘right’ to insurance and employment.
    I have already registered my objections with President Bush calling on him to veto GINA and call upon everyone else to do the same.

  • http://www.ctemploymentlawblog.com/2008/05/articles/hr-issues/quick-hits-gina-background-checks-worklife-studies-telecommuting-with-high-gas-prices/index.html Connecticut Employment Law Blog

    Quick Hits: GINA, Background Checks, Work-Life Studies, Telecommuting with High Gas Prices

    Lots of interesting posts and articles and so little time. So just quick hits today on some new and interesting developments. The Genetic Discrimination Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) became law on Wednesday. I highlighted the bill a few weeks ago and…