Business Report

Tort reform, immigration and career readiness are some of the issues the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Council will pursue in 2019, council chair Christel Slaughter told attendees Tuesday at a luncheon hosted by the Baton Rouge Area Chamber.

“Small businesses are counting on a policy environment that supports their ability to hire, grow and flourish in America’s free enterprise system,” said Slaughter, who also serves as CEO of Baton Rouge-based SSA Consultants.

Among key issues Slaughter plans to tackle as leader of the Small Business Council:

  • Prevent restrictions on the use of arbitration, secretive shareholder takeovers and new trial lawyer initiatives, as excessive civil tort costs are particularly taking a toll on the Louisiana economy;
  • Encourage businesses to view association health plans as an alternative coverage option;
  • Explore the opportunities for contractors that come with fixing crumbling infrastructure;
  • Protect the 1 million immigrants who are currently allowed to work in the U.S. legally, but are at risk of losing that status;
  • Closing the talent gap that exists for many small businesses.

Slaughter also encouraged attendees to sign up to join the U.S. Chamber, which is giving its 2019 State of American Business Address on Thursday.