From The Philadelphia Inquirer
By Juliana Feliciano Reyes
Philadelphia had expanded its five-year-old paid sick leave law to include workers affected by the health crisis. One noteworthy addition: Employers had to allow their workers to use their accrued paid sick time before laying them off. In other words, the city was ordering employers to pay their workers for the sick time they had earned.
Candace Chewning, spokesperson for the Mayor’s Office of Labor, said employers must pay out paid sick time to employees who were laid off on that date, March 16, or anytime after, since the new regulations went into effect then.
Workers who believe their employer has violated this law should file a complaint with the city, she said. After an investigation, which could take from a few weeks to several months, depending on the responsiveness of both the employer and the complainant, if the city finds an employer to have broken the law, it’ll order the employer to pay workers the wages they’re due.
If an employer does not comply, the city will issue additional fines and penalties.
If a business is dealing with coronavirus-related financial problems, the employer can get on a payment plan, Chewning said.
“However," she added, “the sick leave law was effective in 2015 and businesses are expected to budget for providing sick leave for covered employees.”