Potential law to offer protection to business owners against coronavirus-related lawsuits

Capitol Bureau

MIAMI – FEBRUARY 02: A judges gavel rests on top of a desk in the courtroom of the newly opened Black Police Precinct and Courthouse Museum February 3, 2009 in Miami, Florida. The museum is located in the only known structure in the nation that was designed, devoted to and operated as a separate station house and municipal court for African-Americans. In September 1944, the first black patrolmen were sworn in as emergency policemen to enforce the law in what was then called the “Central Negro District.” The precinct building opened in May 1950 to provide a station house for the black policemen and a courtroom for black judges in which to adjudicate black defendants. The building operated from 1950 until its closing in 1963. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – A developing bill by the Kansas Chamber of Commerce would protect businesses and healthcare providers from potential lawsuits related to the coronavirus.

However, this bill could potentially lead to an unsafe environment for employees, according to David Morantz, president of the Kansas Trial Lawyers Association.

“Bills like these are going to make those choices even tougher for workers, and they’re going to incentivize work places and big businesses to cut back on public health measures and public health safety,” Morantz said.

This bill could potentially encourage businesses to open too early and allow them to neglect safety protocols, according to Morantz.

Many businesses refuse to open without this protection, said Eric Stafford, vice president of government affairs for the Kansas Chamber.

“The business community, they’re top concern is the health of their employees and their customers,” Stafford said. “It’s entirely disingenuous to say that the concern over the employees is not a concern for business owners.”

Lawmakers will decide to hear the bill when they return for a one day legislative session on May 21.

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