Opposition to Immunity Bills SF 512, HF 571

MN Sen.Michelle.Benson@senate.mn, MN Rep.Kelly.Morrison@house.mn

Minneapolis Regional Reitree Council, AFL-CIO

Sign the petition to contact the authors of Minnesota legislation (SF 512 and HF 571) that would give blanket immunity from liabiltity to healthcare providers for care during the pandemic.

Our allies believe that this bill shirks most responsibility for care  given during the pandemic, even though the bill does not exempt  acts or omissions constituting intentional or reckless misconduct or gross negligence.

Pleaae sign the petition and/or call Senator Benson (651-296-3219) and Representative Morrison (651-296-4315) and tell them that you are opposed to the bill, because it gives healthcare providers too much immunity from their action.

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To: MN Sen.Michelle.Benson@senate.mn, MN Rep.Kelly.Morrison@house.mn
From: [Your Name]

Dear Senator Benson and Representative Morrison,

I strongly oppose granting immunity to long-term care (LTC) during the Covid-19 pandemic and ask that you not pursue further action on your bill. I am alarmed with the intent of this bill, which is to hamper any accountability to the long-term care industry during the pandemic.

As you are aware, COVID-19 has been raging through the long-term care facilities and accounted for two-thirds of the deaths in Minnesota. So far, over 4,000 lives in long-term care have been lost during this pandemic, This industry has long been declining in providing quality care. Under staffing and poor infection control programs are historically a well documented reality.

Preventing residents and their families to hold the industry accountable for substandard care will put more residents at risk and inevitably result in increased resident deaths. I beg you to keep this fundamental right in place and to consider other solutions to promote the safety and welfare of residents.

By allowing long-term care to operate without this important check, we sacrifice one of the most effective tools in ensuring our elders and vulnerable adults are not neglected and harmed. Legal liability has always functioned as a safeguard for these residents by giving them incentives to provide quality care and comply with laws and regulations.

Families have been severely limited in visiting their loved ones and prevented for continuing to assist in their care, both physical and emotional. Additionally, they haven’t been protected by the Department of Health oversight, which has been stopped or reduced during the pandemic. The Ombudsman has been prevented from entering a facility to investigate and resolve problems. Without these protections, the residents have been vulnerable to poorly run operations.

Getting legal accountability is very challenging under any circumstances but this bill would essentially eliminate the last protection possible during the pandemic.

I urge you to not continue with this immunity legislation, and instead commit protecting our parents, grandparents, friends, and neighbors. They deserve better.