Cranston, RI – The Department of Labor and Training reminds
Rhode Island employers that the Healthy and Safe Families and Workplaces Act
takes effect on July 1, 2018.
Under the law, Rhode Island employers with 18 or more employees
will be required to offer paid sick and safe leave for employees to care for
themselves, family members and/or members of their household. Employers with
fewer than 18 employees must provide sick and safe leave time, although it does
not need to be paid.
The sick and safe leave provisions allow covered employees to
take up to 24 hours of leave in 2018, up to 32 hours in 2019, and up to 40
hours of paid leave thereafter. Earned sick and safe leave time will begin to
accrue at the start of employment or July 1, 2018, whichever is later.
Sick and safe leave can be used for different reasons, including
health care for mental or physical illness, injury or preventative care
required by the employee, a relative or a member of the employee’s household.
Additionally, the law allows employees to take time off when they or someone
they are caring for experiences domestic violence, sexual abuse or stalking.
The DLT’s Labor Standards Unit is responsible for enforcement of
the sick and safe leave regulations, and enforcement will begin when the law
takes effect July 1st.
Until January 1, 2019, if the Department finds that an employer
has mistakenly denied benefits, but has acted in good faith to comply with the
law, the agency will ensure that impacted employees are appropriately
compensated, and will waive administrative penalties as long as corrective
action is taken to prevent further issues.
Employers or employees with questions regarding the requirements
of the law should call the Department of Labor and Training at 401-462-8550 or
visit the www.dlt.ri.gov
for more information.