July 3, 2020

Volume X, Number 185

July 03, 2020

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July 02, 2020

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July 01, 2020

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Seattle Expands Its Paid Sick and Safe Time Ordinance in Response to COVID-19

Effective March 18, 2020, the Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time (PSST) Ordinance allows eligible employees working in Seattle to use PSST when their family member’s school or place of care is closed, regardless of whether such closure is made by a public official. In addition, when “Tier 3” employers (with 250 or more full time equivalent employees worldwide) reduce operations or close a Seattle worksite for any health or safety reason, those employees are now able to use PSST for that reason. Thus far, neither the City Council nor the Office of Labor Standards has provided guidance on what exactly is meant by a reduction in operations.

Previously, PSST was not guaranteed to employees whose child’s school closed for health reasons (but not by a public official), or whose other family member’s place of care was closed for health reasons. Nor was PSST guaranteed to employees of a “Tier 3” employer that simply reduced its Seattle operations or closed its Seattle worksite for health or safety reasons.

Employers should also consider the dramatic impact of the brand-new federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201), which provides paid family and medical leave and paid sick leave at the federal level. Those paid leave entitlements are separate and apart from the existing Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave Program and the PSST already available to workers in Seattle and throughout the state.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2020National Law Review, Volume X, Number 83


About this Author

Jonathan Minear, Employers Attorney, Wage and Hour Compliance Lawyer, Jackson Lewis Law Firm, Seattle

Jonathan M. Minear is an Associate in the Seattle, Washington, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He focuses his practice on litigating workplace law matters and assisting employers with preventive advice and counsel.

Mr. Minear represents employers in state and federal courts in a broad range of matters, including harassment, discrimination, retaliation, employment torts, breach of contract, wage and hour compliance, and wrongful termination claims. He also appears before administrative agencies, such as the Equal Employment...

Michael Griffin, Jackson Lewis, Leave Health Management coordinator, Labor Disability lawyer,
Principal and Office Litigation Manager

Michael A. Griffin is a Principal and Office Litigation Manager in the Seattle, Washington, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is also the Disability, Leave and Health Management coordinator for the Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon, offices, and he is the Litigation Manager for the Seattle, Washingon, office.

Mr. Griffin has a broad area of practice and responsibility with the firm. He acts as lead counsel on all aspects of employment litigation, including defending discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and whistleblower claims. Mr. Griffin litigates claims for breach of non-competition agreements, theft of trade secrets, and/or breach of the duty of loyalty. He has represented employers in actions relating to the misappropriation of electronic communications and information. Mr. Griffin also has a background in labor relations and has represented employers in various matters before the National Labor Relations Board.