The measure would bar employees from suing each other over workplace injuries and illnesses, but it leaves occupational disease claims within the court system and does not address the state’s ailing Second Injury Fund. State Rep. Dave Schatz (R, Sullivan) sponsored a different workers’ comp bill that addresses the fund and would move occupational disease claims to the workers’ comp system. He hopes it will pass, too.
“We can’t continue to let these things go unchecked, because they’re a ticking time bomb that at some point are gonna come up and blow up in our face if we don’t address them," Schatz said. "The Second Injury Fund is out there, and it’s not gonna go away until we come up with a fix.”
Schatz's version of the bill is still alive in the Missouri Senate. The scaled-back workers’ comp bill is now on its way to Governor Jay Nixon (D). He recently told reporters that he agrees with lawmakers that co-workers should not be allowed to sue each other over workplace injuries and illnesses.