Stop 4 Bills Affecting Farm Employment Law
September 5, 2020
Stop Crippling Employment Policy Bills Before the Legislature Adjourns
The California Legislature is expected to consider four important bills in the last week of the 2020 legislative session that will make detrimental changes to California employment law and hinder California farm businesses’ ability to recover from the COVID-19 recession:
AB 685 (Eloise Reyes, D-San Mateo) imposes vague new reporting requirements to numerous government agencies for new COVID-19 infections that may or may not be work-related; may make an employer liable for a retaliatory employment action for sending a sick worker home; and requires employers to give employees medical advice on how to properly isolate at home.
SB 1383 (Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara) is a massive expansion of family and medical leave requiring employers of as few as five employees to provide job-protected family and medical leaves of up to 12 weeks. SB 1383 also imposes a private right of action permitting small agricultural employers to be sued for unintentional, technical violations of the California Family Rights Act.
SB 1102 (Bill Monning, D-Monterey Bay) requires a misleading new notice for non-immigrant H-2a ag workers that mis-states state California law by claiming that all travel time in employer-provided transportation is compensable time, and that all occupants of employer-provided housing are protected by California landlord/tenant law. These mischaracterizations of California law in a newly-required notice will strengthen employee advocates’ legal position when they sue ag employers claiming that travel time is compensable or that ag employees are protected by landlord/tenant law.
Please contact your Senator TODAY and urge opposition to AB 685, and contact your Assembly TODAY and urge opposition to SB 1383, SB 1159 and SB 1102.