CDLE Invokes Public Health Emergency Provisions of Healthy Families and Workplaces Act for 2021
January 5, 2021
By: Colin A. Walker
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) has issued a rule determining that the Public Health Emergency provisions of the Healthy Families and Workplaces Act (HFWA) will be in effect in 2021. This means that full-time employees may take up to 80 hours of paid leave in 2021 for the following reasons:
- Self-isolation or medical care as a result of a communicable illness that is the cause of the public health emergency of the employee or a family member;
- The employer or a governmental agency has determined that the employee’s presence on the job or in the community would jeopardize the health of others;
- The employer or a governmental agency has determined that the employee’s family member’s presence on the job or in the community would jeopardize the health of others;
- To care for a child whose school or daycare is unavailable due to a public health emergency; or
- The employee is unable to work because the employee has a health condition that may increase susceptibility to or risk of a communicable illness that is the cause of the public health emergency.
Part time employees may take Public Health Emergency Leave in an amount equal to the time the employee is normally scheduled to work in a 14-day period or the average of the hours the employee actually works in a 14-day period, whichever is greater.
Leave taken in 2020 under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) may not be counted against Public Health Emergency leave in 2021. However, employers may require Employees to use “Paid Leave” under the HFWA during Public Health Emergency Leave. Employers should note that, unlike HFWA leave, they cannot require employees to provide documentation for Public Health Emergency Leave.
The CDLE has issued facts sheets: Interpretive Notice & Formal Opinion #6B and Interpretive Notice & Formal Opinion #6C regarding the new rule. Employers should consult competent employment counsel to ensure compliance with the HFWA.