Wyoming votes down bill penalizing violence toward healthcare workers

Wyoming is the only state without specific penalties for violence against hospital employees. On Sept. 14, the state's lawmakers rejected a bill that would implement them, Wyoming Public Radio reported. 

In the past year and a half, there have been 121 attacks on Wyoming healthcare workers, Josh Hannes, the state hospital association's vice president, told the state's Joint Judiciary Committee. Healthcare workers and leaders testified on behalf of a bill that would make such offenses their own felony, the radio station reported. 

However, lawmakers on the committee rejected the bill in an 8-5 vote, saying it would not curb violence. Rep. Karlee Provenza went further, saying the bill would not address underlying contributors to violence such as poverty. 

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