New Rules Will Take Effect September 1, 2012 – Workshops for Employers Scheduled for 8/21 and 8/29
Beginning September 1, 2012, Seattle employers will be required to provide a minimum level of paid sick and safe time (PSST) to their employees who work within Seattle city limits. The Seattle Office for Civil Rights is working to support businesses so they are ready to implement the new rules.
What are the rules?
The rules apply to all employers with more than four full-time equivalent employees. All employees are eligible for the new benefit, including full time, part-time and temporary workers. The hourly accrual rate depends on the business’s number of employees. Employers will need to keep records of their employees’ accrual and use of PSST and make that information available to their employees through pay stubs or an accessible online system.
Employees will be able to use their accrued paid sick and safe time as paid time off:
• To deal with their own illness, injury or health condition.
• To take care of a family member (including domestic partners) with an illness, injury or medical appointment.
• When their place of business has been closed by order of a public official for health reasons.
• For reasons related to domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.
How much paid sick and safe time is required?
Click here for a detailed overview on the ordinance and a chart that breaks down the hours employees work relative to the required paid sick and safe time.
How will these rules impact businesses?
There are three possible scenarios for a business, all dependent upon the existing level of paid sick
and safe time an employer already provides to their employees:
Scenario 1: The business is already in compliance. Employers with existing leave policies may already be in compliance with the rules, as long as their policy permits accrual, use and carryover of paid sick/safe leave for the same purposes and under the same conditions as the rules. The rules also allow employers to establish personal time off policies (PTO) that combine sick, vacation and other forms of leave.
Scenario 2: The business is not in compliance but their union employees agree to waive their rights to paid sick and safe time.
Scenario 3: The business is not in compliance. Employers with leave policies that are not in compliance with the rules are required to provide additional paid sick and safe time benefits to their employees.
How can businesses learn more about the new rules?
Free workshops are scheduled for employers:
• Tuesday, August 21, 12 noon – North Seattle: Ballard Campus Swedish Medical Center, 5300 Tallman Ave. NW (NW Market Street just west of 17th Ave. NW), co-sponsored by the Lake Union Association, Aurora Merchants Association, Northwest Marine Trade Association, North Seattle Industrial Association, Fremont Chamber and Ballard Chamber of Commerce.
• Wednesday, August 29, 3 pm – Capitol Hill: Century Ballroom, 915 E. Pine Street, co-sponsored by the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Seattle Business Association. A workshop date in West Seattle will be announced as soon as the details have been finalized.
For more information, visit:
http://www.seattle.gov/psst or call the Office of Civil Rights at 206-684-4500
For technical assistance:
E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 206-684-4500 for answers to your questions about the Paid Sick/Safe Time Ordinance.