State Legislators Hope To Pass Bills That Help Organ Donors

The lawmakers that the proposed legislation will encourage more living organ donations

Bernie Tafoya
March 19, 2019 - 2:12 pm
Organ Donation

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Two state legislators are encouraged by legislation they’ve sponsored to spark more interest in people becoming living organ donors. 

State Representative Deb Conroy said it was when she was recovering from giving one of her kidneys to her ex-husband last year, that she realized that not everyone is able to take time off from work to recover as she was. 

So she became a sponsor of a living organ donor protection bill.

"They would basically be, you’re protected from any discrimination in workplace. You get the protected [up to 12 weeks of unpaid> leave and you cannot be discriminated against by your life or health insurance," Rep. Conroy said.

The House Insurance Committee has a hearing Tuesday afternoon on the legislation. 

Another living organ donor incentive bill is being heard by the Senate Revenue Committee on Wednesday and sponsor Sen. Julie Morrison hopes to have both pieces of legislation voted on by the full House and Senate by the end of the week.

Rep. Conroy said insurance companies are on board with the legislation.

Senator Morrison's bill would provide a tax credit to employers who allow employees to take leaves to become living organ donors.

She said the need is great.

"Last year, we had, just in the state of Illinois, 3,400 people who were waiting for a kidney, desperately needed one, but we were only able to find 800 donors."