What would you do if you went to work one day and was told in a company meeting that you were going to be required to share your genetic information with them and it wasn’t optional? Well according to a shocking report, A proposed bill could soon force employees to participate in workplace wellness programs that collect their and their families’ health and genetic data. This controversial bill is called the “Preserving Employee Wellness Program Act” and was reportedly introduced in the House on March 2nd by Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-North Carolina. According to sources, this bill would allow employers to actually penalize employees if they don’t join workplace wellness programs that collect this kind of data.
Of course, not everyone is happy with this, and some workers have even pushed back on having to join these programs, expressing concern that the company is collecting information that the employee would rather keep private even though Health and genetic information is protected under federal nondiscrimination and genetic privacy laws such as the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. The alarming this about this is the fact that an increasing number of companies are offering workplace wellness programs: about 61%, according to the House Education and the Workforce Committee. Also, Nearly 90% of large companies offer them as well. So, in other words, this may be coming down the pike very quickly, and you may be one to be faced with this decision at your workplace!