Disability, Leave & Health Management Blog

Offering Practical Guidance to Employers

The Chicago City Council amended its Paid Sick Leave Ordinance (PSLO) to clarify and expand the bases to take paid leave and to create a new action for wage theft. The wage theft provisions in the amended  PSLO became effective on July 5, 2021, and the paid sick leave amendments will take effect on August 1, 2021. Read more about these changes from our Illinois colleagues.…
Beginning July 25, 2021, employees can use Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave (WPFML) to care for more people. The law originally permitted employees to get paid leave to help address the serious health condition of any “family member.” That term was defined to include: “Child,” including biological, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild, or a child to whom the employee stands in loco parentis, is a legal guardian, or is a de facto parent,…
On July 26, 2021, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued guidance explaining that “long COVID” can be a disability under Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which apply to state/local government and public accommodations respectively, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), and Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Section 1557). While…
Can employers mandate vaccines? The Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) says they can, but before employers do, they should consider the many legal and practical risks. On July 26, 2021, the OLC issued an opinion (dated July 6, 2021) stating that the COVID-19 vaccinations’ Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) status under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act (FDCA) does not prevent public and private entities from imposing vaccine requirements. However, the OLC expressly…
The CDC is now recommending that everyone – including fully vaccinated individuals – wear masks in indoor public settings in all areas with substantial and high transmission of the COVID-19 virus and get tested following exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. The new CDC guidance also recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. In its latest Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully
Public schools and universities are barred from requiring vaccines that have not received full U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval under Ohio House Bill 244 (HB 244), signed by Governor Mike DeWine on July 14, 2021. The new law goes into effect on October 13, 2021. Read more about this new Ohio law here.…
On June 24, 2021, the New Hampshire Legislature passed a two-year state budget that includes a paid leave program. Governor Chris Sununu signed the budget on June 25, 2021, and coverage must be provided by January 1, 2023. The voluntary program, called the Granite State Paid Family Leave Plan, provides New Hampshire workers with 60 percent wage replacement for up to six weeks of work per year if they take time off for personal health…
The Oregon legislature has temporarily amended Oregon’s Equal Pay Act to allow employers latitude to both encourage COVID-19 vaccinations and to attract new employees as the state emerges from COVID-19 business restrictions. Under the revised statute, when evaluating whether employees who perform work of comparable character are paid equitably, a comparison of employee compensation may exclude vaccine incentives. Similarly, hiring and retention bonuses are excluded from the calculation. The exclusion is only temporary, however,…
As part of the Omnibus Jobs and Economic Growth Finance and Policy Bill, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has approved an amendment relating to pregnancy accommodations and barring reducing compensation for lactation breaks, among other changes. The amendment goes into effect on January 1, 2022. Under Minnesota law, employers must provide employees who need to express breast milk for their infant child reasonable break times each day. The amendment prohibits an employer from reducing an employee’s…