Oregon governor signs workplace scheduling bill

Oregon Governor Kate Brown has signed a law that adds substantial work scheduling stability to employees working in the retail, hospitality, and food services industries. The governor signed the law, Senate Bill 828, on August 8. It had cleared the Oregon Senate on June 22 with a 23-6 vote, and the House on June 29 with a 46-13 ballot.

Retail trade.

The law covers “employees” in retail, hospitality, and food services establishments, who are engaged in providing services relating to the retail trade, hotels and motels, casino hotels, or food services. Covered employees will not include a salaried employee, a worker supplied to an employer by a worker leasing company, or an employee of a business that provides services to or on behalf of an employer. In addition, the law targets only those employers that are retail, hospitality, or food services establishments employing 500 or more employees worldwide, including chains and integrated enterprises.

Good faith scheduling.

Among other things, the legislation requires covered employers to provide new employees with a written “good faith estimate” of their work schedules at the time they are hired. Plus employers will be required to provide employees with a work schedule in writing at least seven calendar days before the first day of the work schedule under the version of the legislation that will be operative July 1, 2018. An amendment increases the advance notice to 14 calendar days, operative July 1, 2020.

Voluntary standby list.

Employers are permitted to maintain a standby list of employees whom the employer requests to work additional hours to address unanticipated customer needs or unexpected employee absences if the listed employees have requested or agreed in writing to be included on the list and the employer provides required written notice to each employee.

Rest between work shifts.

Absent an employee’s request or consent to work such hours, an employer may not schedule or require an employee to work during the following “rest periods”: the first 10 hours following the end of the previous calendar day’s work shift or on-call shift; or the first 10 hours following the end of a work shift or on-call shift that spanned two calendar days.

Compensation for employer-requested work schedule changes.

S.B. 828 will require that employers provide certain compensation for each employer-requested change to an employee’s written work schedule without the required advance notice, although the law provides a number of exceptions.

Other provisions.

S.B. 828 includes several other provisions aimed at protecting employees, including the right to identify limitations or changes in work schedule availability, requests not to be scheduled for work shifts during certain times or at certain locations, anti-retaliation protections, and actions for retaliation.

Operative dates.

Provisions related to good faith scheduling, the voluntary standby list, advance notice of written work schedule (except for the noted amendment), rest before work shifts, and compensation for work schedule changes summarized above will be operative July 1, 2018.

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