Louisiana legislators took to the House floor Wednesday to voice concerns that they were possibly exposed to the swine flu by a Cabinet secretary.
State Department of Social Services Secretary Kristy Nichols testified in legislative committees at the State Capitol on Tuesday and Wednesday. Nichols was among five state employees that officials confirmed on Tuesday had the swine flu, which is officially called H1N1. Nichols said in an interview that she was notified of the test results Wednesday. Nichols, who said she started feeling sick June 9, said she was assured by her physician and the state Office of Public Health that she was no longer contagious.
“Why are you around people?” House Speaker Pro Tem Karen Peterson, who sat next to Nichols during Wednesday’s House Judiciary Committee, asked on the House floor. Peterson said Nichols was coughing constantly throughout the meeting. She called Nichols’ presence at the Capitol “irresponsible,” particularly for a state leader.