House lawmakers will now be required to go through a metal detector security screening before being allowed to enter the chamber.
The new safety protocol announced Tuesday from the acting sergeant-at-arms comes less than a week after a mob loyal to President Donald Trump stormed the White House. Five people died.
The acting sergeant-at-arms, Timothy P. Blodgett, wrote to House staff: “Effective immediately, all persons, including Members, are required undergo security screening when entering the House Chamber.”
Previously, members of Congress had almost free roam at the Capitol, able to bypass security screening stations at most entrances to the building.
At the House chamber, there have been Capitol Police officers and civilian door monitors but no screening stations.
Blodgett also told lawmakers that they must wear masks during the COVID-19 crisis and that they face removal from the chamber if they fail to do so.