Q: What workers are covered by this new law?
Healthcare workers, first responders, and all other workers at employers with more than 500 employees nationwide – regardless of full-time or part-time status.
Q: What makes workers eligible for these additional paid sick leave benefits?
You are eligible if you haven’t already taken supplemental COVID-19 paid sick leave and if you meet any one of these criteria:
- You are prohibited by your employer from working due to health concerns related to the potential transmission of COVID-19.
- You are advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine or self-isolate due to concerns related to COVID-19.
- You are subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine order related to COVID-19.
Q: How much additional paid sick leave do eligible workers receive?
- Full-time workers are eligible for 80 additional hours of paid sick leave.
- Part-time workers are eligible for the equivalent of two weeks of their normal schedule.
- Short-hour or per diem workers are eligible for 14 times their average daily hours over the past 6 months.
Workers are to receive their regular rate of pay for these additional hours of paid sick leave with a daily maximum of $511 and an overall maximum of $5,110 for the entire benefit.
Q: How long are these additional paid sick leave hours available?
These benefits last until the end of 2020. For food sector workers only, this benefit is retroactive to April.
Q: Do workers have to use their own sick leave, vacation, or PTO before they can use this supplemental sick leave?
No. Your employer cannot require you to use any other paid or unpaid leave before you use this new supplemental paid sick leave.
Q: How do workers apply for these additional paid sick leave benefits?
You apply for this benefit through your employer. Your employer must start implementing this law no later than September 19.
Q: What should workers do if their employer refuses to follow this law?
If you are eligible and apply for these additional paid sick leave benefits but your employer refuses to provide them, please do the following:
- Notify your SEIU-UHW steward or representative right away.
- File a COVID-19 incident report about this violation. In the section titled “Safe Protocols for Exposed Workers,” respond “Yes” to the question “Has your employer failed to protect your pay, leave time, benefits, or seniority after you were quarantined due to exposure at work?”
- File a complaint with the California Labor Commissioner’s Office.
For more details on this new law, go to this State of California webpage.