ABC's Legal Action Committee Input on Navigating Essential Status Questions
NOTE: The concepts expressed herein are opinions of the Legal Action Committee and, as such, must not be relied upon instead of upon the State documents themselves. If after reviewing the State documents, you remain unclear whether particular work is exempt, consider consulting with qualified legal counsel.
Governor Inslee’s Stay Healthy, Stay Home Proclamation and accompanying list of Essential Activities on Monday left many questions for the construction industry as to what activity is permissible. Wednesday’s Construction Guidance memo from the Governor clarified that construction is NOT considered essential, other than exceptions for limited circumstances.
We are advising construction companies to:
1. Read the Proclamation, list of Essential Activities, and Construction Guidance Memo
2. Use the Legal Action Committee’s Scope of Exemptions analysis to help determine whether specific construction activity may fall within areas eligible to proceed while the Stay in Place Order is in place. Consulting legal counsel to ensure compliance with the Order before proceeding is recommended.
3. Confirm that specific projects or elements within construction projects are either included in Essential Services, support Essential Services, or petition to have such projects confirmed as permissible activity. To clarify status, or to petition to be added to the Essential Services list, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Companies that proceed with construction activity should refer to ABC of Western Washington’s COVID-19 Employer and Employee Resources for updates, and in particular review Important Clarification Regarding Gov. Inslee's Stay Healthy, Stay Home Order 25-20 along with all safety directives and guidance.
Legal Action Committee Attorney Members have agreed to provide an initial consultation at no charge to ABC members, and you should discuss terms to engage further before proceeding. Access the LAC Attorney Member Directory.
Legal Blogs from Member Companies:
Federal Law Mandates Significant Additional Employee Benefits for Employers with Fewer Than 500 Employees:
There are many provisions in the law. Some key components employers should be aware of are an additional required 80 hours of paid sick leave to employees (on top of any existing paid leave policies or requirements) as well as paid FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) benefits. (Courtesy of Employer Solutions Law)
Considering reducing your workforce?
If you are considering reduction to your work force in the form of permanent, temporary or partial layoffs, please reach out to Karen Galipeau Forner with Employer Solutions Law for guidance on how to navigate this decision without violating employee’s protected leave entitlements.
*Information provided under the legal information section is for general information purposes only
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