New York, NY – RIMS Board Director Patrick Sterling recently joined Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) and stakeholders from the small business community and the insurance industry to emphasize the urgent need for Congress to pass the H.R. 7011, the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act (PRIA).
On June 4th, RIMS officially announced its support for a PRIA solution. Introduced by Rep. Maloney on May 26, PRIA would create a framework for insurance companies to offer business interruption insurance policies that cover pandemics, and would create a reinsurance program with a federal backstop to ensure the insurance industry has enough capacity to insure losses caused by pandemics. The Federal backstop will make sure that these business interruption policies are both widely available and affordable for small businesses, and maintain marketplace stability.
“As the risk management lead for Texas Roadhouse, my industry peers, and many others, are continuing to struggle to manage the complexities of the COVID-19 pandemic – as many of our existing policies fail to cover its impact,” said Sterling. “RIMS does not agree with those who say that pandemics are not insurable. As a united front, carriers and the federal government can develop a solution to share the financial risk of future pandemics. RIMS members believe a public-private program will establish a viable insurance market and create certainty for businesses across the country. This collaboration makes sense and that is why we support the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2020 – HR 7011.”
In a press release issued by her office, Congresswoman Maloney said, “As we saw during today’s roundtable, there is broad consensus that we need a program like the one created by PRIA – to provide business owners and our economy with better stability in the event of any future pandemics. A forward-looking, public-private partnership like this, one supported by a federal backstop, will help businesses keep their employees on payroll and weather the storm that a public health emergency brings. Congress needs to be proactive in helping businesses protect themselves from economic losses as a result of pandemics, which, as we’ve seen, can be devastating to businesses of all sizes — from the mom and pop grocery down the street to institutions like Lord & Taylor.”