NYC requires employers to grant temporary schedule changes
- New York City employers must grant workers certain schedule changes for emergency caregiving or other personal events in light of a new law enacted Jan. 19.
- Specifically, city employers must allow workers to make two temporary schedule changes per calendar year for "a caregiving emergency, a legal proceeding or hearing for subsistence benefits, or any circumstance that would constitute a basis for permissible use of safe time or sick time" under local code. Employees who request a schedule change must notify the employer or their direct supervisor as soon as they know there's a need for time off. The request does not need to be written.
- Separately, employees also have the right to request in writing appropriate flexible work arrangements at any time under the law without fear of retaliation. The employer must provide a written response accepting or denying the request within 14 days of the request. Arrangements may include, but are not limited to, paid time off, remote work, different hours and/or unpaid leave. The law takes effect 180 days after Jan. 19, likely July 18.
NYC's city council is among a number of local and state governments that have spent the last year adopting employee-friendly legislation. Democratic-led governments are making most of the changes, many in response to Republican lawmakers' rolling back of Obama-era rules, experts say.
Despite push-back from the business community, employers can expect to see even more states and cities join in on this trend. The challenge for HR managers will be keeping on top of changes in the states and cities where their organizations operate.
- The New York City Council Bill Int. No. 1399-2016
- HR Dive Reader poll: 53% of respondents say state and local laws are their top compliance concern