By Conn Maciel Carey’s COVID-19 Task Force
On April 10, 2020, the District of Columbia passed the COVID-19 Response Supplemental Emergency Amendment Act of 2020 (“the Act”). Among other things, the Act amends the D.C. Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008 by creating a new category of paid leave called “Declared Emergency Leave.” This is in addition to the March 17, 2020, amendment of the D.C. Family and Medical Leave Act (“D.C. FMLA”) that created “Declaration of Emergency” leave. Under the Act, employers must now provide paid leave to employees for any covered reason provided by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”). Notably, this leave appears to be in addition to: (1) leave provided by FFCRA; (2) leave provided by D.C. FMLA; and (3) leave provided by the employer’s policies. The new law is currently in effect and will remain in effect for no longer than 90 days, until July 9, 2020.
With respect to coverage, companies employing between 50 and 499 people must provide Declared Emergency Leave to D.C. employees. It is unclear, however, if the 50 to 499 employees must all work in D.C. to trigger the new law’s application, or whether the new law applies to any employee who works in D.C. so long as the employer employs between 50 and 499 employees nationwide. Subsequent regulations may be issued to further clarify. Additionally, there is an exemption from coverage for healthcare providers. For purposes of Declared Emergency Leave, healthcare provider is defined as any doctor’s office, hospital, healthcare center, clinic, post-secondary educational institution offering healthcare instruction, medical school, local health department or agency, nursing facility, retirement facility, nursing home, home healthcare provider, any facility that performs laboratory or medical testing, pharmacy, or any similar institution, employer or entity. This includes any permanent or temporary institution, facility, location or site where medical services are provided that are similar to such institutions.
An employee is eligible to take Declared Emergency Leave if Continue reading