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:
CA – Electronic posters permitted – January 2022
Effective in January 2022, the state of CA will permit digital/electronic versions of labor code-related posters to be sent to employees in addition to posting physical posters in the workplace. This new law does not include posters required by the DFEH or Federal posters, which still must be physically posted.
CO – Healthcare Vaccine Mandates – September 2021
Employers with Colorado employees in any of the following healthcare categories are now subject to a state mandate to put in place a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy.
Covered licensed agencies include: general hospitals, hospital units as defined in CO section 25-3-101 (2), psychiatric hospitals, community clinics, rehabilitation hospitals, convalescent centers, community mental health centers, acute treatment units, facilities for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, nursing care facilities, hospice care, assisted living residences, dialysis treatment clinics, ambulatory surgical centers, birthing centers, home care agencies, and other facilities of a like nature, except those wholly owned and operated by any governmental unit or agency.
Under this mandate, the following rules will apply:
- All employees, direct contractors, and support staff must have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination no later than September 30, 2021.
- All employees, direct contractors, and support staff must have received their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccination (if applicable) no later than October 31, 2021.
CT Pay Range Disclosure and Comparable Pay – October 1, 2021
Effective October 1, 2021, all Connecticut employers are required to disclose the pay range for a position to applicants and employees.
As a result, employers are prohibited from:
- Failing or refusing to provide an applicant for employment the pay range for a position for which the applicant is applying, upon the earliest of (a) the applicant’s request, or (b) prior to or at the time the applicant is made an offer of compensation.
- Failing or refusing to provide an employee the wage range for the employee’s position upon (a) the hiring of the employee, (b) a change in the employee’s position with the employer, or (c) the employee’s first request for a wage range.
The bill also expands Connecticut’s prohibition of gender-based pay discrimination to require equal pay for comparable work. A result, employers cannot pay an employee less than what the employer is paying an employee of the opposite sex for comparable work. Comparable work will be viewed as a composite of skill, effort and responsibility and performed under similar work conditions. Pay should be determined based on the employee’s credentials, skills and/or geographic location, education, training and experience.
New York Health and Essential Rights (HERO) Act – September 2021
On May 5, 2021, the New York Health and Essential Rights Act (NY HERO Act) became effective, which mandates that all New York employers establish new workplace health and safety protections in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The purpose of the NY HERO Act is to protect employees against exposure and disease during a future airborne infectious disease outbreak.
Employers are required to either adopt an Exposure Prevention Plan (EPP) provided by the NY DOL, or establish an alternative plan that meets and/or exceeds the minimum requirements under the law by September 3, 2021.
In addition to establishing an EPP, employers are required to allow employees to establish and administer a workplace safety committee. The workplace safety committee must be compromised of two-thirds non-supervisory employees, which will be authorized to perform tasks, including but not limited to, raising health and safety concerns, reviewing exposure prevention plan policies, and participating in site visits by any governmental entity responsible for enforcing safety and health standards.
The HERO Act law prohibits discrimination or retaliation against any employee who exercises their rights under the law.
NY Paid Sick Leave Law Update – September 30, 2020
The New York Department of Labor (NYDOL) announced on May 27, 2021, that employees in New York must be permitted to use sick leave under the New York Paid Sick Leave Law to recover from any side effects stemming from COVID-19 vaccinations. This includes using leave for the recovery of any side effects of the COVID-19 vaccination.
The NY Paid Sick Leave Law (NYPSL) accrual became effective September 30, 2020, requiring NY employers to allow eligible employees to use PSL for the following reasons:
- For mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition, regardless of whether it has been diagnosed or requires medical care at the time of the request for leave*; or
- For the diagnosis, care, or treatment of a mental or physical illness, injury or health condition; or need for medical diagnosis or preventive care.
- For an absence from work when the employee or employee’s family member has been the victim of domestic violence as defined by the State Human Rights Law, a family offense, sexual offense, stalking, or human trafficking due to any of the following as it relates to the domestic violence, family offense, sexual offense, stalking, or human trafficking:
- to obtain services from a domestic violence shelter, rape crisis center, or other services program;
- to participate in safety planning, temporarily or permanently relocate, or take other actions to increase the safety of the employee or employee’s family members;
- to meet with an attorney or other social services provider to obtain information and advice on, and prepare for or participate in any criminal or civil proceeding;
- to file a complaint or domestic incident report with law enforcement;
- to meet with a district attorney’s office;
- to enroll children in a new school; or
- to take any other actions necessary to ensure the health or safety of the employee or the employee’s family member or to protect those who associate or work with the employee.
This article does not constitute legal advice and there are subtle variations in employment law as it pertains to this topic, depending on where your business operates. It is strongly suggested that you seek consultation or legal counsel before making decisions about policies.