Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Program Approved
On January 25, 2022, Governor Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders jointly announced that they have reached an agreement to revive last year’s COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave (“SPSL”) to provide employees with continued access to SPSL through September 30, 2022.
Yesterday, February 7, 2022, the California legislature passed the SPSL bill (SB 114). Once signed by Governor Newsom, the bill will become California law. The new law will be effective immediately, and will require most employers to give workers up to two weeks of paid time off for certain COVID-19 related reasons. SPSL will apply retroactively to any workers who would have qualified for time off under the SPSL law as early as January 1, 2022, and expires on September 30, 2022.
Please refer our previous January 26, 2022 update regarding the new SPSL program for additional information on its requirements.
Mask Mandate Lifted in CA, But Not in Los Angeles County
Yesterday, February 7, 2022, Governor Newsom announced that the statewide indoor mask order will expire on February 15, as a result of California’s case rate decreasing by 65% and the state hospitalization rate stabilizing since the Omicron variant peak.
This order still requires unvaccinated people to be masked indoors, and everyone, regardless of vaccination status, to wear masks in higher-risk areas, such as schools, public transit, nursing homes and other congregate living facilities.
Additionally, the indoor and outdoor “mega event” definition will return to pre-surge guidance:
- Indoor events with more than 1,000 people must require proof of vaccination or a negative test for all attendees
- Unvaccinated attendees at an indoor mega event must wear masks.
- Outdoor events with more than 10,000 people do not need to require proof of vaccination or a negative test, but masks or negative tests are recommended.
Effective immediately, California also lifted the requirement that people show proof of a negative coronavirus test before visiting hospitals and nursing homes.
Workplaces must continue to follow the COVID-19 prevention standards set by Cal/OSHA.
Please note that Los Angeles County is not lifting its mask mandate at this time, but other localities, such as Orange County and Riverside County, have confirmed that they will abide by the state’s new timeline.
As additional guidance is issued, we will keep you informed.