Proposed legislation will stop governor from confiscating medication and supplies

During the previous public health emergency, several shipments of medical supplies were confiscated by the government of Guam by the order of the governor. This was legal, according to the authority granted to her under the two-decade-old Emergency Health Powers Act, contained in Chapter 19 of Guam’s health code: Title 10.

Sen. Chris Duenas wants to limit this power and others in legislation that will amend the Emergency Health Powers Act for future public health emergencies. Senators will hear public testimony at a hearing April 11 at 3 p.m. at the Guam Congress Building.

Among the powers Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero used from the Act included the shut down of churches, the designation of clinics, and the calling of the militia to establish checkpoints on roadways.

Kandit will be featuring components of the Duenas legislation leading up to the hearing. Monday we featured Section 2 of his Bill No. 7, which will prohibit the governor from infringing on citizens’s constitutional and Organic Act rights during a public health emergency. The next section, Section 3, will prohibit her and future governors from seizing or confiscating medication, and medical supplies and equipment.

Here is Section 3 of his Bill No. 7-37:

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