HARRISBURG – Legislation called Respect the Whistle Act is advancing in the PA Senate. With a bipartisan vote, Senate Bill 842 was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee and is before the full Senate. Sports officials in the Keystone State have had protection from assault since 1990. The bill addresses a critical gap in that protection by tackling the issue of harassment. It will create a separate offense for harassment against sports officials to ensure they can do their jobs without fear. Bill sponsor, Philadelphia County Sen. Jimmy Dillon says nearly half of sports officials have reported feeling unsafe due to the actions of parents, coaches, or players. More than 55% have had to break up a fight during a game. The bill has earned the support of the National Association of Sports Officials and PIAA.