House Majority Has It Backwards: Safeguards Protect Small Manufacturers and Their Workers

Coalition for Sensible Safeguards Statement

March 17, 2015

Contact: David Rosen, drosen@citizen.org, (202) 588-7742

Note: On Wednesday, the U.S. House Committee on Small Business will hold a hearing titled “Tangled in Red Tape: New Challenges for Small Manufacturers,” that purportedly will examine the effects of regulations on small manufacturers.

Clear rules of the road protect small businesses and manufacturers from powerful interests who use their financial advantage to try to rig the rules in their favor. Congress’ own track record over the past two months is a case in point. The various anti-regulatory proposals backed by the U.S. House majority are designed to stack the odds in favor of big business, often to the exclusion of small business voices.

The costs of failing to regulate are staggering – and usually fall on businesses and workers who can least afford them. Every year, the lack of effective workplace safety protections costs between $250 billion and $330 billion in injuries and illnesses (PDF). On average, 150 American workers die every day from occupational injuries and diseases. How are lost productivity, lost profits and lost lives supposed to help small manufacturers? Opponents of regulation never say.

Instead of attacking the rules and standards that keep us safe, the U.S. House Committee on Small Business should be looking for ways to level the playing field for small businesses and strengthen our regulatory system – as more than four out of five Americans in both parties are demanding. Large-scale deregulation at the behest of big business is the problem, not the solution. The committee should focus on reforms that will help genuine small businesses.

###

The Coalition for Sensible Safeguards is a national alliance of more than 150 consumer, labor, scientific, research, faith, community, environmental, small business, good government, public health and public interest groups — representing millions of Americans. We are joined in the belief that our country’s regulatory safeguards should secure our quality of life, pave the way for a sound economy and benefit us all. For more information, go to www.SensibleSafeguards.org.