June 26, 2018
Cranston, RI – The Department of Labor and Training reminds Rhode Island employers that the Healthy and Safe Families and Workplaces Act takes effect on July 1, 2018.
Under the law, Rhode Island employers with 18 or more employees will be required to offer paid sick and safe leave for employees to care for themselves, family members and/or members of their household. Employers with fewer than 18 employees must provide sick and safe leave time, although it does not need to be paid.
The sick and safe leave provisions allow covered employees to take up to 24 hours of leave in 2018, up to 32 hours in 2019, and up to 40 hours of paid leave thereafter. Earned sick and safe leave time will begin to accrue at the start of employment or July 1, 2018, whichever is later.
Sick and safe leave can be used for different reasons, including health care for mental or physical illness, injury or preventative care required by the employee, a relative or a member of the employee’s household. Additionally, the law allows employees to take time off when they or someone they are caring for experiences domestic violence, sexual abuse or stalking.
The DLT’s Labor Standards Unit is responsible for enforcement of the sick and safe leave regulations, and enforcement will begin when the law takes effect July 1st.
Until January 1, 2019, if the Department finds that an employer has mistakenly denied benefits, but has acted in good faith to comply with the law, the agency will ensure that impacted employees are appropriately compensated, and waive the administrative penalties, as long as corrective action is taken to prevent further issues.
Employers or employees with questions regarding the requirements of the law should call the Department of Labor and Training at 401-462-8550 or visit the www.dlt.ri.gov for more information.
ABOUT DLT: The RI Department of Labor and Training offers employment services, educational services and economic opportunities to both individuals and employers. DLT protects Rhode Island’s workforce by enforcing labor laws, prevailing wage rates and workplace health and safety standards. The department also provides temporary income support to unemployed and temporarily disabled workers. For more information, please call the RI Department of Labor and Training at (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at www.dlt.ri.gov.
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DLT is an equal opportunity employer/program - auxiliary aids and services available upon request. TTY via RI Relay: 711