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April 2022: Oregon Rule Expands Reasons Employees Can Take Emergency Paid Leave

06 Apr


Update Applicable to:
All employers in the state of Oregon.

What happened?
March 21, 2022, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) adopted a permanent rule, BLI 3-2022, that expands the reasons employees can use leave under Oregon’s paid sick and safe leave law during a public health emergency.

What are the details?
Under the permanent rule, eligible employees may take protected sick leave for absences connected to:

  1. an emergency evacuation order of level 2 (SET) or level 3 (GO) issued by a public official with the authority to do so, if the affected area subject to the order includes either the location of the employer’s place of business or the employee’s home address; or
  2. a determination by a public official with the authority to do so that the air quality index or heat index is at a level where continued exposure to such levels would jeopardize the employee’s health.

BOLI’s permanent rule expanding paid sick and safe leave is identical to its temporary rule in effect from August 6, 2021, through January 17, 2022. On December 29, 2021, BOLI filed a notice of the proposed permanent rule. In its rulemaking report, BOLI stated that it received no public comment during the four-week comment period or testimony at the public rulemaking hearing.

Effective April 1, 2022, during a public emergency, eligible employees can also use protected paid sick leave for the following reasons:

  1. closure of the employee’s place of business, or the school or place of care of the employee’s child, by order of a public official due to a public health emergency;
  2. a determination by a lawful public health authority or by a health care provider that the presence of the employee or the employee’s family member in the community would jeopardize the health of others, such that the employee must provide self-care or care for the family member; or
  3. the exclusion of the employee from the workplace under any law or rule that requires the employer to exclude the employee from the workplace for health reasons.

For more information, please see the links below:

BLI 3-2022


What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links provided above and make immediate adjustments to their paid leave policy to be in compliance with the new rule.

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This communication is intended solely for the purpose of conveying information. The present post might incorporate hyperlinks directing readers to websites managed by third-party entities. The inclusion of any links within this communication is meant to serve as points of reference and could encompass opinion articles from various law firms, articles from HR associations, official websites, news releases, and documents of government agencies, and other relevant third-party sources. Vensure has no authority over these external websites and bears no responsibility for their content. Furthermore, Vensure does not endorse the materials present on these websites. The contents of this communication should not be interpreted as legal advice or as a legal standpoint concerning specific facts or scenarios. Nor should it be deemed an exhaustive compilation of facts potentially pertinent to federal, state, or local laws. It is strongly advised that employers solicit legal guidance from an employment attorney when undertaking actions in response to any legal updates provided. This is due to the possibility of future alterations occurring in federal, state, and local laws, regulations, as well as the directives and guidelines issued by governing agencies. These changes may transpire at any given time, potentially rendering certain portions of the content within this update void or inaccurate.

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