Arkansas lawmakers vote to allow suits over secret videos

The Associated Press
Staff Writer

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas lawmakers have given final approval to a bill opposed by animal-welfare groups that would let companies sue anyone, including employees, if they share a secretly made videotape aimed at harming a business owner.

The House voted 77-1 Friday in favor of the measure, which was set up to target agricultural practices but opponents warn could threaten nearly all whistleblowers. The House had approved a previous version of the measure but it was amended in the Senate so it would not apply to health care providers or facilities like nursing homes. The measure now heads to Gov. Asa Hutchinson's desk.

Supporters of the legislation say it targets people who obtain material from nonpublic areas of commercial property and release the material to harm the owner.