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BOLI Issues Two Temporary Orders to Support Employers In Response To COVID-19

March 20, 2020

By Kathryn M. Hindman & Jessica D. Osborne

In an effort to provide additional support to Oregonians during the COVID-19 pandemic response, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) issued two temporary administrative orders (“Order”) that will have immediate impact on most Oregon employers.

OFLA Expansion. BLI 4-2020 temporarily extends the definition of “sick child” leave under the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA) to cover certain global pandemic mitigation measures. The Order adds OFLA coverage for Oregonians caring for children whose school or place of care is closed in response to the statewide public health emergency declared in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19. As with all other “sick child” leaves under OFLA, the leave may be taken as a continuous block or intermittently. The temporary measure is currently effective March 18, 2020 through September 13, 2020.

Oregon employers were already required to allow employees up to 40 hours of Oregon Sick Time for this reason. The addition to the definition of “sick child” leave under OFLA now allows eligible employees to use any accrued leave, in addition to their Oregon Sick Time, to care for a child during a COVID-19-related school or daycare closure. In addition, remember that OFLA also allows an employee to take an “extra” 12-weeks of sick child leave following a full 12-weeks of parental “bonding” leave for a newborn or newly adopted child. Presumably this temporary extension of OFLA sick child leave will also allow an extra 12-weeks for new parents who have day care closed due to the coronavirus. Bullard will provide updates if BOLI provides any additional clarification or guidance on the Order as information comes available.

Relaxed Apprenticeship RecordkeepingBLI 3-2020, temporarily alters the processing requirements for apprenticeship program minutes under Oregon Laws Chapter 839-011-0170 (Apprenticeship and Training Council), effective March 17, 2020 through September 12, 2020. The Order temporarily suspends the requirement that all committee actions be recorded and processed within fourteen working days, altering the requirement to occur “within a reasonable and practicable time frame.”

We are monitoring other changes employers are facing in this coronavirus new world. For further information, contact any member of our COVID-19 team which includes Kathryn HindmanMaryann YelnoskyFrancis BarnwellKent Pearson (Labor Law), and Kara Backus (Employee Benefits).
 
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