Last week, the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors enacted an urgency ordinance to require employers with 500 or more employees nationally to provide supplemental paid sick leave to covered employees for COVID-19 related reasons. The County’s ordinance applies only to businesses in unincorporated areas of the County and to employees who perform any work within the County. Businesses can verify on the County’s website whether they are located in an unincorporated area.

The ordinance, which went into effect immediately due to an urgency clause, requires covered employers to provide up to 80 hours of additional paid sick leave to full-time employees, and part-time employees to receive an amount no greater than the employee’s average two-week pay over the period of January 1, 2020, through April 28, 2020.

Under the newly enacted ordinance, employees may take supplemental leave for the following reasons:

  1. A public health official or healthcare provider requires or recommends the employee isolate or self-quarantine to prevent the spread of COVID-19;
  2. The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
  3. The employee needs to care for a family member who is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COV1D-19 or has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine related to COVID-19; or
  4. The employee takes time off work because the employee needs to provide care for a family member whose senior care provider or whose school or childcare provider ceases operations in response to public health or other public official’s recommendation.

The ordinance specifies the employee must be unable to work or telework and must make a written (which includes but is not limited to an electronic mail or text) request to the employer.

The only offset indicated in the ordinance is for paid time off provided to employees for the reasons outlined in the ordinance, outside of the employer’s regular leave policies.

The ordinance does not apply to food sector workers covered by the statewide Supplemental Paid Sick Leave for Food Sector Workers. Also exempted from the ordinance are emergency responders and health care providers.  This is consistent with other recent local supplemental paid sick leave ordinances passed in California.

As of the date of this article, the County has not issued any guidance on the new ordinance or recommended postings or notices.

Jackson Lewis will continue to monitor these local ordinances and other emergency regulations pertaining to COVID-19. Jackson Lewis’ Coronavirus Task Force is actively monitoring the developing situation surrounding the complexities of COVID-19.