Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time: Everything you need to know (and links to the rest)

Whether you work for a business or own one, here’s what you need to know about Seattle’s Paid Sick and Safe Time ordinance

Seattle paid sick and safe timeAs of September 1st, 2012, tens of thousands of Seattleites working in hundreds of local businesses will begin earning paid leave under Seattle’s Paid Sick and Safe Time (PSST) ordinance.

In Brief

Know Your Rights: Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time [PDF]

Seattle’s ordinance applies to all employers with more than four full-time equivalent employees located in the City of Seattle. All employees are eligible for the new benefit, including full time, part-time and temporary workers, though some new businesses, work-study students, and others are exempted. Employers that already provide paid leave  that meets all requirements of the ordinance need not offer additional leave. (Get a short summary here– see also links below.)

Employees can use their accrued PSST to take paid time off for:

  • Their own illness, injury or health condition.
  • Caring for a family member (including a domestic partner) with an illness, injury or medical appointment.
  • A public health emergency (when their place of employment has been closed by order of a public official for health reasons)
  • Reasons related to domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

The amount of leave employees can accrue, use or carry over from one year to the next depends on the size of the business:

Tier 1: Small Employer (4-49 FTEs*)
Employees accrue: 1 hour per 40 hours worked
Employees can use: Up to 40 hours per calendar year
Employees can carryover: Up to 40 hours per calendar year

Tier 2: Medium employer (50 to 249 FTEs*)
Employees accrue: 1 hour per 40 hours worked
Employees can use: Up to 56 hours per calendar year
Employees can carryover: Up to 56 hours per calendar year

Tier 3: Large employer (250 or more FTEs*)
Employees accrue: 1 hour per 30 hours worked
Employees can use: 72 hours per calendar year
Employees can carryover: 72 hours per calendar year

*FTE=Full Time Equivalent employees

The Details

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR) is responsible for implementing and enforcing  the new PSST requirements. SOCR offers free technical assistance for employers and workers, as well as brochures, posters and other materials, including:

The SOCR website also offers:

  • An updated and comprehensive summary of the PSST Ordinance.
  • Translated versions of the PSST poster in Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog and Somali.
  • A Spanish version of the PSST brochure.
  • A Powerpoint presentation: “What Employers Need to Know.”
  • Template letter for employers to employees about PSST.
  • A sample Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Collective Bargaining Agreements.
  • Information on the assessment of the Ordinance that the City of Seattle will conduct.
  • A downloadable PDF version of the full text of the Ordinance (as well as a link to the online version).

For more information or to request other materials about paid sick and safe time, visit http://www.cityofseattle.net/civilrights/SickLeave.htm or contact Elliot Bronstein (elliott.bronstein@seattle.gov or 206-684-4500).

Map of Seattle City boundaries

View a map showing Seattle’s boundary lines: On the left side of the page, click on the “Detailed Zoning” layer in the “Zoning” section (third section) to add shading that defines Seattle city limits. Enter an address or a neighborhood in the top left field to zero in on the location you are interested in. Click on “Building Outlines” to view specific lots; zoom in to read street names.

View a map showing Seattle’s census tracts and zip code areas (PDF)

About seattlehealthyworkforce

The Seattle Coalition for a Healthy Workforce is a diverse coalition of businesses, faith-based, labor, family, and community groups. We’re working to ensure everyone has paid sick days, so we can all have safer food, healthier families and more productive workplaces.
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2 Responses to Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time: Everything you need to know (and links to the rest)

  1. Pingback: All you need to know about Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time (and then some) – Washington Policy Watch

  2. Pingback: 21 Years after the FMLA, Cities and States Can Lead the Fight for Family Leave | Washington Work and Family Coalition

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