With COVID-19 leaving many without work, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a three-way agreement with legislative leaders for a paid sick leave bill that would also provide assistance and job protection for New Yorkers affected by the coronavirus outbreak and its economic impact.
On March 18, Governor Cuomo signed the bill (A.10153) to provide immediate relief for New York workers.
“No one should have to make the impossible choice between losing their job or providing for their family and going to work, especially during this pandemic,” Cuomo said. “We seek to build upon this effort with guaranteed sick leave for all in this year’s budget.”
The program bill will guarantee job protection and pay for those who are quarantined from the coronavirus. It follows the announcement of the state providing two weeks of paid leave for state workers who are quarantined.
“Last week I said we would lead by example by guaranteeing two weeks’ pay for state workers who have been quarantined as a result of COVID-19,” Governor Cuomo said. “The paid sick leave measure we’ve agreed to today expands those protections to all new Yorkers — because no New Yorker should lose their job or income for following a critical public health order.”
The governor’s new legislation will be dependent on the size of companies and it would guarantee job protection for the duration of the quarantine, regardless of the size of a company.
Employers with 10 or fewer employees, and a net income less than $1 million, must provide job protection for the duration of the quarantine order and guarantee their workers access to Paid Family Leave and short-term disability for the period of the quarantine, including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000.
Employers with 11-99 employees, and employers with 10 or less employees — but who have a net income greater than $1 million — will provide at least 5 days of paid sick leave, job protection for the duration of the quarantine order, and guarantee their workers access to Paid Family Leave and short-term disability for the period of the quarantine, including wage replacement for their salaries up to $150,000.
Employers with 100 or more employees, as well as all public employers — regardless the number of employees — will provide at least 14 days of paid sick leave and guarantee job protection for the duration of the quarantine order.
These provisions will take effect immediately upon passage in order for New York workers to take advantage of the benefits sooner than later. The Senate and Assembly are expected to vote on the bill Wednesday afternoon.
Looking past the coronavirus and for a more permanent plan, the legislation also includes a paid sick leave proposal that was advanced by Cuomo as part of his January State of the State Address and 2021 Executive Budget.
The legislation proposes that employers with four or fewer employees and a net income less than $1 million will provide at least five days of unpaid sick leave each year; employers with five to 99 employees and employers with four or fewer employees and a net income greater than $1 million will provide at least five days of paid sick leave each year; and employers with 100 or more employees will provide at least seven days of paid sick leave each year.
These proposals would be effective 180 days after enactment.