Paid Sick Leave Bill Introduced to Oregon House

paid sick leave billLast week, a draft bill requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to Oregon employees was introduced in the House Business and Labor Committee.  The draft bill is available for review here.

The bill as drafted would require most Oregon employers to provide one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, up to at least 56 hours—or 7 days for an employee who works 8 hours/day—per year. 

The key provisions of the draft bill include:

  • An employee is not eligible to use accrued paid sick time until he/she has worked at least 90 days for the employer.
  • Employees may use paid sick time for their own health conditions or for that of a family member.
  • Employers may adopt policies that cap an employee’s ability to earn or use paid sick time at a maximum of 56 hours per year. 
  • Employees may use paid sick time in increments as small as one hour at a time.
  • Employers may not require an employee to find a replacement worker or to work an alternate make-up shift as a condition of using paid sick time.
  • Employers cannot count these paid sick time absences against the employee when enforcing absenteeism policies.

This draft bill is similar to a bill introduced in 2013, which never made it out of its House committee.  This statewide paid sick leave mandate may get farther now that Oregon’s two largest cities, Eugene and Portland, have both adopted their own paid sick time ordinances.  We will closely follow the progress of this bill and provide updates as it moves through the legislative process.  This bill is likely to meet with stiff opposition by various employer groups.  If you wish to voice concerns about the bill, contact your representative.  If you have questions about the Eugene and Portland paid sick time ordinances or what this draft bill may mean for you as an employer, please contact our Saalfeld Griggs Employment Law group.