Advocacy in Action: Advancing the Policies Necessary to Become the Safest, Healthiest and Most Sustainable State in the Nation

Carolyn Johnson, Florida Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs, testifies in support of a single heat safety standard to promote safe workplaces.

The Florida Chamber Advocacy Team had some incredible wins during the 2024 legislative session helping to advance the Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet’s vision to become the safest, healthiest and most sustainable state in the country. As the Leadership Cabinet provides thought leadership, training and direction, the government affairs team works with lawmakers to advance the Leadership Cabinet’s vision and ensure Florida continues its momentum in the right direction.

HB 433- Employment Regulations

Representative Tiffany Esposito speaks at the Florida Chamber 2024 Legislative Fly-In on her priorities in HB 433, including the workplace heat safety preemption.

After a local jurisdiction contemplated a first-of-its-kind, unworkable workplace heat safety ordinance, the Florida Chamber stepped in to work with lawmakers to ensure employers and safety managers have a consistent framework. Heat safety is not a one city or one county issue, which is why it was important for the legislature to prohibit local governments from adopting potentially conflicting outdoor heat safety standards as OSHA adopts a national standard. A patchwork of 411 city and 67 county mandates around breaks, access to shade, and provision of beverages at specified temperatures for outdoor workers would create significant confusion for employers as they grapple with different safety standards across workplaces. The safest working environment is where there are clear standards from site to site without any confusion. That is why the Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet on Safety, Health and Sustainability continues to lead the way by providing industry-standard best practices and trainings to employers, while helping to inform federal regulators as they develop national standards.

SB 330- Behavioral Health Teaching Hospitals

One of the earliest findings in the Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet’s mental health research was the need to address access to care and Florida’s behavioral health workforce shortage. In order to address these challenges, the Florida Chamber supported legislation to create a framework for behavioral health teaching hospitals across the state. These teaching hospitals will not only address the need for more psychiatrists statewide but will help facilitate and train other necessary workers in the behavioral health continuum. Through these facilities and the expansion of the behavioral health workforce, Floridians will have greater access to the mental health services they may need. The Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet has taken on the mantle of a first-in-the-nation business-led mental health initiative because a healthier and stronger Florida is more than just good business.

For more information on these bills or to get more engaged in the Florida Chamber’s advocacy efforts, please contact Carolyn Johnson at [email protected].

Meet the Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet Advocacy Team!

Mark Wilson | President & CEO, Florida Chamber of Commerce | [email protected] | 850.521.1209

Katie Yeutter | COO, CFO & President, Florida Chamber Leadership Cabinet on Safety, Health and Sustainability | [email protected] | 850.521.1297

Frank Walker, Executive Vice President of Government Relations & Political Action, Florida Chamber of Commerce | [email protected] | 850.521.1211

Carolyn Johnson, Vice President of Government Affairs, Florida Chamber of Commerce | [email protected] | 850.521.1235

Chad Kunde, Director of Business Climate and Governance Policy, Florida Chamber of Commerce | [email protected] | 850.521.1268