Employment Legislation On the Horizon in California
Several pieces of employment-related legislation are pending before the California Legislature this 2009-2010 term. Some of the more noteworthy items are listed and described as follows:
AB 2727 (Bradford) – This bill would prohibit an employer from denying an application for employment for the reason that the applicant has previously been convicted of a criminal offense unless the employer determines that a) there is a direct relationship between the prior conviction and the employment sought or b) the granting of employment would involve an unreasonable risk to property or persons. This is an expansion from current legal prohibitions on consideration of criminal history. Currently, the bill sits in the Assembly Appropriations Committee awaiting a re-hearing after initially passing the Committee on strict party lines.
AB 2340 (Monning) – This bill gives California employees the right to take three days of unpaid leave in the event of the death of certain relatives. More specifically, the bill prohibits an employer discharging, disciplining, or discriminating against an employee for requesting or taking up to three days of bereavement leave upon the death of a spouse, child, parent, sibling, grandparent, grandchild, or domestic partner. The bereavement leave can be taken up to thirteen months following the death, and need not be on consecutive days. Last week, this bill was passed by the Assembly Appropriations Committee on a 11-5 margin and will now make its way to the Assembly floor. Notably, similar legislation was vetoed in 2007 by the Governor Schwarzenegger after passing both the Assembly and Senate.
SB 990 (Dutton) – This bill also seeks to clarify meal break laws by making clear that the requirement to “provide” a meal break means “to make the break available.” The bill would also clarify circumstances under which an employee could waive a meal period or agree to an on-duty meal period. This bill still awaits hearing in the Senate Committee on Labor and Industrial Relations.
Later in the week I will be posting two more.