Sick and safe time ordinance now in effect
For healthy workers, healthy businesses and healthy communities, a new ordinance protecting time off for people who get sick and work in Minneapolis took effect July 1. Employers with six or more workers will be required to provide time off at a minimum threshold of at least one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked. Employers with five or fewer workers must also provide sick time, but it may be unpaid. The goal of the ordinance is to protect public health and prevent workers from being penalized because of illness or a need to care for a sick loved one.
Until this law took effect, four out of 10 Minneapolis workers lacked access to paid sick time.
With some exceptions, the new ordinance governs all employers in Minneapolis and includes full-time, part-time and temporary workers and paid interns. Other requirements include:
- Workers may use leave for their own health and certain family members’ health.
- Victims of domestic abuse, sexual assault and stalking may use leave to receive medical treatment and other necessary services.
- Workers may use leave to care for family members during emergency closure of school or place of care, including for inclement weather.
- Workers will accrue one hour of leave for every 30 hours worked until they accrue 48 hours per year or 80 hours overall including carryover during additional years.
Paid time off, sick, vacation or other types of leave used at employee discretion often qualify as “sick and safe time.” Employees who already receive such leave in sufficient amounts do not receive additional time off under the new law. The 40 percent of employees – often part-time workers – who previously lacked such access will now receive it, and the ordinance creates a minimum standard of protection for everyone.
Paid sick and safe time is intended to:
- Ensure that workers can address their own health needs and the health needs of their families.
- Reduce public and private health care costs by enabling workers to seek early and routine medical care for themselves and their family members.
- Make Minneapolis a more secure and productive community.
- Safeguard the public welfare, health, safety and prosperity of Minneapolis’ residents, workers and visitors.
People who work in Minneapolis whose employers don’t provide the sick and safe time required by the new law can call 311 or visit www.minneapolismn.gov/sicktimeinfo to ask a question or file a complaint with the Labor Standards Enforcement Division of the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights.
Note: In a lawsuit brought against the City of Minneapolis in the case of Minnesota Chamber of Commerce et al v. City of Minneapolis, Court File No. 27-cv-16-15051, the Hennepin County District Court issued a temporary injunction prohibiting the City of Minneapolis from enforcing the Sick and Safe Time Ordinance against any “employer resident outside the geographic boundaries of the City.” This case is currently on appeal to the Minnesota Court of Appeals. This temporary injunction order will be applied until further action of the court.
Published Jul 11, 2017