For Immediate Release
November 20, 2020
Safe harbor protections a critical component of Commonwealth’s economic recovery
HARRISBURG - Following the General Assembly’s passage of H.B. 1737, legislation which includes temporary safe harbor protections for employers from unwarranted COVID-19 related lawsuits, PA Chamber of Business and Industry President and CEO Gene Barr issued the following statement calling on Gov. Tom Wolf to sign the bill into law.
“We applaud the members of the House and Senate who stood with the Commonwealth’s broad-based business community in support of commonsense, limited COVID-19 liability protections. It’s important to note, this legislation does not provide blanket immunity and bad actors will still be held accountable. These liability protections are targeted, narrow in scope and temporary – which Pennsylvania businesses desperately need as they struggle to overcome the economic challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has placed on them.
“After having spent significant resources to ensure their compliance with state and CDC-issued health and safety guidelines, employers continue to face an ever-growing avalanche of litigation – in many cases, simply because they’re following the mandates put into place by the administration. As we have heard from so many of our members, these concerns place a constant dark cloud over employers who are already facing numerous financial hurdles working to operate during this pandemic. That’s why local chambers from across the Commonwealth and associations representing a wide range of constituencies – including advocates for children, nonprofits, the United Way, pediatricians, colleges and universities, school districts and small businesses – have united in calling for limited COVID-19 liability protections. They need the certainty that targeted and temporary safe harbor protections can provide while they work to bring our economy out of this difficult time, and they need it immediately.
“Limited liability protections are a critical component to moving Pennsylvania forward. We urge Governor Wolf to stand with Pennsylvania’s business, nonprofit, local government, child advocacy, education and medical communities and sign H.B. 1737 into law.”
The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry is the state's largest broad-based business association, with its statewide membership comprising businesses of all sizes and across all industry sectors. The PA Chamber is The Statewide Voice of BusinessTM.