Coming to A City Near You? Fair Workweek Gains Ground

February 25, 2020 |

There is a new wrinkle to wage and hour compliance–predictive scheduling and fines associated with failing to meet the laws. Philadelphia–home to the cheese steak, the Liberty Bell, Ben Franklin and some sports teams–has joined several jurisdictions in enacting a Fair Workweek Ordinance.  Large retail, hospitality and food services (250 employees or more world-wide with 30 or more locations) must:  (1) give existing employees the right of first refusal to work additional hours before hiring new employees; (2) post and provide advance written notice of work schedules; (3) provide predictability pay for any departures from the posted schedules; and (4) permit a rest period of nine hours between shifts.  These requirements would impact as many as 130,000 workers in Philadelphia, beginning 7/1/2020.

But it is not all brotherly love in Philly (or elsewhere) when it comes to accepting predictive scheduling laws. Eleven states have have passed legislation preempting local laws governing employee scheduling:  Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.  Preemption legislation failed to pass in the last legislative session in Pennsylvania.

What does this trend mean for smaller employers? For now, nothing legally.  As a practical matter however if predictive scheduling becomes the norm for hourly workers in large retail, hospitality and food service businesses, attracting workers in an already tight job market could get more difficult. As we have noted before, union activity and labor dissent continue to grow even amid a business friendly federal government.

Questions on fair workweek issues or any other workplace matter? We can help.

 

 

*New York City, Chicago, Seattle, the State of Oregon and San Francisco, San Jose and Emeryville, CA

 

 

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