New York State Senate Passes NY HERO ACT

Date: March 03, 2021

NFIB Urges Members to Take Action

On Monday, March 1st, the New York State Senate Passed the NY HERO ACT, legislation that would require employers to prevent exposure to airborne illnesses beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. NFIB and other business organizations strongly opposed the legislation, as it would create overly burdensome and costly mandates for small businesses. The bill would potentially require all businesses, including small businesses, to provide personal protective equipment (PPE), cover employee health screenings, provide break times to employees for hand washing, implement strict cleaning and disinfecting protocols, allow flexible working hours, meeting and travel options, and reconfiguring workspaces, and establish a safety committee. The legislation also allows employees to sue employers for noncompliance, creating a new avenue for frivolous lawsuits against small businesses.

At a time when small businesses are still fighting for survival, now is not the time for an extensive new regulatory framework for employers, exposure to punitive actions, and new cost burdens. New York’s legislators should prioritize small business relief to ensure our recovery starts with Main Street.

The legislation has been introduced in the Assembly and is currently in the Assembly Labor Committee awaiting action. NFIB urges all members to take action by contacting their legislators. Your elected officials need to hear directly from you – the small business owner!

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