New Poll Reveals Bi-Partisan Opposition to Corporate Immunity
As nearly 2,000 Americans die every day from the coronavirus, many of whom are in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, businesses are pushing to reopen. Many, including the facilities that have seen the worst outbreaks, are asking for broad immunity from lawsuits when their employees and customers get hurt. In other words, they are asking for permission to cut safety corners and to put their own workers, patients and customers at risk, with no consequences. Unfortunately, some politicians are buying into this dangerous approach and promoting it as a way to jumpstart the economy.
A new national poll conducted by Hart Research found broad bipartisan opposition to such corporate immunity. 64% of voters polled oppose blanket immunity, recognizing that companies will cut corners and take fewer safety precautions if they know they cannot be held accountable for any harm that may result. The full results of the poll can be viewed here.
To reopen businesses and to get our economy back on track, workers need to feel comfortable returning to work. They need to be confident that their employers are doing everything necessary to provide a safe and healthy work environment. They need to know they will continue to have important legal protections if they become sick or hurt on the job. Likewise, patients and customers need to be confident that they are returning to businesses that put safety first. When we walk into a restaurant, a mall, or a movie theater, we should do so knowing that business is taking reasonable steps to keep us safe. Without that confidence, workers won’t return to work, and customers won’t return to dine or shop. The best way to incentivize businesses to make safety the priority is to impose consequences when they don’t. That’s where legal liability plays such an important role – it is the single strongest incentive businesses have to do the right thing.