Judiciary Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

SB-348

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING EMPLOYMENT PROTECTIONS FOR AN EMPLOYEE WHO SERVES AS A STATE OR FEDERAL JUROR.

Vote Date:

3/21/2016

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable

PH Date:

3/18/2016

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Judiciary Committee

REASONS FOR BILL:

Judge Vanessa Bryant alerted Senator Coleman to her concerns regarding jurors' potential apprehension about serving. This bill protects workers from losing their jobs or facing penalties for fulfilling their civic duty to serve on a state or federal jury. It ensures that an employee is not deprived of his or her employment, or threatened or otherwise coerced with respect to his or her employment, because the employee serves as a state or federal juror.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

None expressed.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, Chief Judge Janice C. Hall: Chief Judge Hall expressed her support for the bill, noting that she and other judges often have to turn away otherwise qualified potential jurors because they can't afford to miss work. She feels that this bill will allow more people to serve on juries, which will strengthen our courts and government.

United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, Judge Vanessa Bryant: Judge Bryant urges passage of S.B. 348 to clarify that the General Assembly intended to assure that every resident who performs their civic duty by serving on a jury should be compensated by their employer, regardless of whether that service is on a state or federal jury.

United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, Judge Michael P. Shea: Judge Shea supports S.B. 348 because, as a federal judge, he “can attest that this clarification would be a welcome addition to the efforts of all courts in Connecticut” to protect jurors from adverse action at work.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

None expressed.

Reported by: Jerald Lentini

Date: 3/31/16