Inspiring HR is happy to provide Monthly State Law Updates as a service to our subscribers. These briefs provide a general description and are not meant to be all inclusive of compliance requirements.
This list is not inclusive of all legislative changes for employers across the U.S. Other changes may have been addressed in previous updates, which can be accessed online on our website www.inspiringhr.com.
Employers are encouraged to work with their Inspiring HR Consultant before making policy changes to capture the full requirements of these laws.
Some of the notable upcoming State Changes in this issue are as follows:
California – Mandated Reporter Training
California – Mandated Reporter – Effective 1/1/2021
Effective in January 2021, the state of CA requires all employers of 5 or more employees who employ minors to have Mandated Reporters in their workplace to report suspected cases of child abuse and neglect. Mandated Reporters are all supervisors of minor employees and authorized Human Resource Representatives and must:
- Sign an acknowledgement form that outlines responsibilities
- Be given a copy of Penal Code 1165.7 immediately or upon hire and
- Complete training on Mandated Reporters
- training option available via CA Department of Social Services
Covered employers must also have a Mandated Reporter policy in their handbooks.
Michigan Alters COVID-19 Worker Quarantine Requirements
MI COVID-19 Quarantine Reqs. – As of January 1, 2021
In order to tighten the leave parameters for employees affected by COVID-19, Governor Whitmer issued an executive order that limits the availability of job-protected leave. On August 27, 2020 the Governor of Michigan issued an Executive Order tightening the symptoms of COVID-19 which by definition would be imposed for employees who feel that they are at risk of infecting others with COVID-19.
On Dec. 30, 2020, the governor signed Senate Bill 1258 (SB 1258) into law, modifying COVID-19 worker quarantine requirements, most likely in response to updated CDC guidelines.
SB 1258 addresses the timelines and conditions that must be met before they return to work for the following categories:
- An employee who tests positive for COVID-19.
- An employee who displays the principal symptoms of COVID-19, but has not yet tested positive.
- An employee who has had close contact (as defined by the CDC guidelines) with someone who tests positive for COVID-19.
Under SB 1258, workers are no longer required to stay home nor are they protected if they have come into close contact with someone who merely displays the principal symptoms of COVID-19.
The new law adds an exception for certain employees (i.e., health care workers, first responders, etc.) who would otherwise be subject to quarantine, who have not yet tested positive for COVID-19, and who are not experiencing symptoms, to be allowed to participate in onsite operations when necessary if their failure to do so would cause serious harm or danger to public health or safety.
Employers complying with SB 1258, CDC & OSHA guidelines, executive orders, and all other relevant state and federal regulations as an affirmative defense for liability in returning employees to work.
Virginia makes COVID-19 Standards Permanent
Virginia – Permanent COVID-19 Standards – Effective 1/27/2021
Effective Jan. 27, the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board became a permanent standard for COVID-19. The “Final Permanent Standard for Infectious Disease Prevention of the SARS-CoV-2 Virus that Causes COVID-19” will be enforced by the Virginia Occupational Safety and Health program (VOSH) and took effect on Jan. 27.
The new requirement modifies a temporary standard established in 2020, and employers will need to adjust their practices to reflect these changes.
Specifically, employers must adjust to all required revisions to Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Plans and training requirements that are effective March 26.
The modifications and requirements are extensive, and we recommend that employers seek HR or legal consult for assistance before attempting to comply to the new standards.