PIA National, along with over a hundred organizations from the business community, today sent a letter to ask Congress to enact temporary and targeted liability relief legislation related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Such temporary protections are necessary to protect businesses from potentially spurious lawsuits arising out of the pandemic.
The letter notes that, as parts of the country continue to reopen from government-mandated lockdown, employers trying their best to follow applicable guidelines may still be forced to defend against lawsuits related to illness. This may deter many from reopening, causing even more businesses to fail and even more employees to lose their jobs.
The letter specifically asks that Congress temporarily provide liability protections for: (1) businesses, non-profit organizations, and educational institutions that work to follow applicable public health guidelines against COVID-19 exposure claims; (2) healthcare workers and facilities providing critical COVID-19-related care; (3) makers, donors, distributors, and users of certain personal protective equipment (PPE) critical to the COVID-19 response; and (4) public companies targeted by unfair and opportunistic COVID-19-related securities lawsuits. The letter asks that such protections be temporary and limited in scope so that employers that knowingly disregard public health guidelines can still be held accountable. The purpose of this effort is not to protect bad actors but to ensure that employers can reopen their businesses and keep their workers employed, so that the economy can be put back on track going forward.
PIA National will continue to work with Congress on this and other efforts to ensure businesses and employees are given appropriate aid and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic.