Yesterday, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) released the draft text for the much-anticipated COVID-19 emergency regulation on which the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (OSHSB) will vote on November 19, 2020.

Employers should take an immediate look at this text. Given the political urgency of COVID-19, it’s widely-anticipated that the OSHSB will pass this text without any changes at their meeting on November 19. Because it’s an emergency regulation, it can go into effect as soon as 10 days after passage, meaning that it may be in effect by early December. 

As previously reported, the National Lawyers Guild submitted a petition (Petition 583) for Cal/OSHA to draft an emergency COVID-19 standard in May 2020. The OSHSB voted in September to take the unprecedented step of having Cal/OSHA draft the emergency standard without a stakeholder advisory committee which means that both business and labor groups have not seen the emergency regulation’s draft text until yesterday. 

The OSHSB has already approved an advisory committee after the emergency regulation is passed, and instructed Cal/OSHA to report back to the Board to potentially update or revise the regulation within four months of initial passage — meaning that stakeholders may be stuck with this text for now but will have a chance to make their voices heard in early in 2021 to seek changes. 

Robert Moutrie, Policy AdvocateCalChamber

CalChamber members can read more about Cal/OSHA Requirements and Inspections in the HR Library. Not a member? See how CalChamber can help you.

The post Cal/OSHA Releases Draft COVID-19 Emergency Regulation appeared first on HRWatchdog by HRWatchdog.

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As we finally enter the homestretch of 2020, new California employment laws are inching closer to taking effect on January 1. SB 1383 is one of the most significant new laws this year, substantially expanding the reach and scope of the California Family Rights Act (CFRA).

While the California Legislature passed and the Governor signed SB 1383, government agencies are mainly responsible for creating rules on how new laws are implemented through a process called rulemaking. The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing’s (DFEH) Fair Employment and Housing Council (FEHC) is responsible for any CFRA rulemaking. To date, we’ve had just one update from the FEHC on the CFRA expansion — the creation of regulations without regulatory effect that conform the old regulations to the law.

If you missed these, you’re not alone. The regulations were buried in the September FEHC meeting agenda, and the DFEH has not highlighted them. Thus far, the regulations submitted simply conform the CFRA to SB 1383 by:

  • Eliminating any geographical requirement for employee eligibility;
  • Eliminating any reference to the New Parent Leave Act; and
  • Updating the family members for whom leave may be taken, amongst other changes.

However, further rulemaking may potentially address the increased scope of the CFRA and account for the now-substantial difference between the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the CFRA.

The FEHC will be holding another meeting on December 5, 2020, and it remains to be seen whether the FEHC will take up any further rulemaking on the CFRA before January 1, 2021. Stay tuned to HRWatchdog for any updates.

In the meantime, CalChamber’s employment law experts will be holding two webinars — one for small employers and the other for larger employers — to help employers get ready to administer the new CFRA law starting on January 1. Both webinars will be held on Wednesday, November 18. Topics covered include notice and documentation requirements, amount of leave available under the CFRA and best practices. Register now!

Matthew J. Roberts, Employment Law Counsel/Subject Matter Expert

CalChamber members can read more in-depth coverage of the new 2021 employment laws in the HR Library. Not a member? See what CalChamber can do for you.

The post California Family Rights Act (CFRA) Expansion Initial Regulations appeared first on HRWatchdog by Matthew J. Roberts, Esq..

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