We Need Your Help: Liability Protection Letter of Support
Email to COVID-19 Mailing List: June 1st
As you have heard in many of our recent “Today's Three Things to Know” emails, the Chamber and many of our industry partners have been working fervently to get liability protection legislation passed at the state and federal levels. We’ve heard the calls from you – our membership – about how important liability protections are to reopening the economy and bringing our jobs back.
We now need your help – the South Carolina House and Senate have both formed liability committees and are now ramping up with the expectation of the full General Assembly returning around June 16th. We would encourage you to send in testimony to the committees before the hearings begin. The committees are both meeting tomorrow as follows:
- Senate Re-Open SC Business Liability Subcommittee Meeting: meeting time is immediately upon adjournment of the Senate Re-Open SC Select Committee (which meets at 10:00 am) – or around 12:00 pm. The meeting can be viewed live via the SCStateHouse website. Public testimony will not be taken at this meeting. You can submit written testimony to President@scsenate.gov
- House COVID-19 Liability Protection Review Committee: meeting time is 1:00 pm. The meeting can also be viewed live via the SCStateHouse website. The committee is taking limited public testimony which has been predetermined. You can submit written testimony to firstname.lastname@example.org
Below is suggested language for written testimony, but feel free to add your own personal experience in emphasizing the need to pass legislation. The legislation has little chance of passing if legislators don’t begin to hear from employers about how protecting businesses from unwarranted lawsuits is key to effectively rebuilding our state’s economy.
If you have any questions or need any additional assistance facilitating written testimony, please reach out to Katie Titus.
Dear Members of the Liability Subcommittee,
Employers in South Carolina are dealing with incredible challenges during these uncertain times. As we re-open and try to re-build our businesses, we have to adapt to an entirely new way of doing business. We are doing our best to follow constantly changing guidance to keep our workplaces safe for our employees and customers. But while we want to stay open and get back to more normal operations, we also risk being targets of unwarranted COVID-19-related lawsuits.
With so many hurdles we are facing now, we are asking for your help to ease one of those hurdles by protecting employers from liability. Specifically, we ask that you pass legislation that is temporary and targeted to give immunity to employers from lawsuits that are related to COVID-19 claims so long as the employer has followed official public health guidance. Immunity should be granted from when the pandemic started – during the most uncertain times – and last through the end of the pandemic or December 31, 2021, whichever is later.
To be clear, we are not asking those bad actors to be protected if they take no steps to protect their workplaces.
Unwarranted litigation will only serve to derail South Carolina’s economic recovery. Instead, legislators can make a real difference in helping South Carolina employers get back on track and revive our economy by taking immediate action to pass liability protection for employers.