ProPublica recently published an in-depth series detailing the demise of workers’ compensation benefits in many states. Journalist Michael Grabell did an excellent job researching the changing issues faced by injured workers and their families. Grabell’s articles relate stories like those I hear daily from injured workers in Alabama. If you want to understand the terrible toll of work-related injuries in our communities, I urge you to read his articles:
- The Demolition Of Workers’ Compensation
- How Much Is Your Arm Worth? Depends On Where You Work
- The Fallout Of Workers’ Comp ‘Reforms’: 5 Tales Of Harm
Hopefully, Grabell’s research and writing will spotlight these troubling issues and lead to real reforms protecting our workers. While I’m hopeful, recent years have seen significant efforts in the Alabama Legislature to roll-back and eliminate even the minimal protections provided in our State. Just three years ago, in 2012, one Alabama State Senator proposed a “false” reform that would cut-off medical benefits to injured workers. I discussed that proposal in a prior post.
Now, two Alabama State Senators have proposed a new reform for workers’ compensation benefits. This new Alabama proposal follows ProPublica’s series and seeks to raise benefits for injured body parts. Is this proposed law an improvement? I certainly intend to study it. I hope it is not similar to prior proposed ‘reforms’ that offer one benefit but reduce or eliminate other important benefits in exchange. As a state, we should value the working men and women who build and strengthen our communities.
The Blackwell Law Firm represents injured workers across Alabama. We believe in helping workers who have suffered a serious personal injury. If you have questions about workers’ compensation benefits or potential personal injury claims, let us know. We are happy to talk with you. Consultations are always free and confidential.