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Several key pieces of legislation expanding employees’ rights and including deadlines for employer compliance are set to go into effect. Although the effective dates of these laws are spread out throughout this year and the next, employers should begin working now to bring their workplace practices into compliance.
Tipped Wage Workers Fairness Amendment Act (TWWFAA). The TWWFAA requires employers taking a tip credit to 1) submit a copy of their sexual harassment policy documentation and certifications to D.C.’s Office of Human Rights (DCOHR); 2) submit reports containing the number of instances of sexual harassment complaints to the DCOHR; and 3) provide sexual harassment and wage and hour training to all employees, managers, owners, or operators of the organization who work or oversee operations in the D.C. Those with tip-sharing policies also must provide their employees with a tip declaration form each pay period. The deadline for submitting sexual harassment policies and reports was extended to May 18, 2023. The deadline for completion of the sexual harassment training has been extended to August 31, 2023.
Initiative 82. Voters approved an initiative which gradually phases out the D.C. tip credit and simultaneously increases the minimum hourly cash wage. The tipped minimum wage will be $8.00 per hour on July 1, 2023. The D.C. minimum wage will also increase to $17.00 per hour for all employers on July 1, 2023. The passing of Initiative 82 does not affect the training requirements under the TWWFAA so employers should still be prepared to comply.
Second Chance Amendment Act (Act). The Act includes automatic sealing of criminal records for individuals charged and not convicted of non-violent crimes. The waiting period to seal convictions has also been shortened. Employment applicants can indicate “no record” when asked about prior arrests, court appearances, adjudications, or convictions. Employers In fields requiring working with children, elderly, or special needs individuals are still permitted to access criminal records. The Act is awaiting an approved budget to go into effect.
Parking Benefits. The Parking Cashout Law went into effect on January 15, 2023 and requires employers with 20 or more D.C. employees that offer parking benefits to provide a “Clean Air Transportation Fringe Benefit” to employees who decline the parking benefit, pay a fee of $100 per month per employee offered a parking benefit to the Department of Clean Air Compliance, or implement a transportation demand management plan. The Clean Air Transportation Fringe Benefit can be used by employees for public transportation or carpooling. A Transportation Demand Management Plan explains how covered employers will reduce the number of commuter trips their employees make by car by at least 10% from the prior year. The law does not apply to employers that do not offer free or subsidized parking.
Reproductive Health. Effective February 23, 2023, the Enhancing Reproductive Health Protections Amendment Act of 2022 (ERHPAA), recognizes the right to carry a pregnancy to term, to give birth, or to have an abortion; and to choose or refuse contraception or sterilization. The ERHPAA also prohibits employers from taking adverse action against an employee seeking or inducing an abortion or assisting another in seeking or inducing an abortion.
Domestic Workers. The Domestic Worker Employment Rights Amendment Act of 2022 (DWERAA) requires a written agreement for domestic workers who are employees or independent contractors. A written agreement must include the following: start date; ending date, if known; address where work is to be performed or the hiring entity’s business address that is on file with D.C.’s Department of Licensing and Consumer Protection; primary contact information for the hiring entity, including a telephone number; duties to be performed by the domestic worker; rate of pay per hour, week, or other unit of time including overtime rate for employees; form, place, and frequency of payment; date first payment will be provided; weekly schedule, including days of the week, start time, end time, and number of hours of work per week; the customary practice or time of rest or meal breaks; types of leave from work provided and whether the leave shall be paid or unpaid; any other compensation or reimbursement provided by the hiring entity, such as health insurance premiums, transportation allowance, or separation pay; whether the domestic worker must provide their own vehicle for the fulfillment of work duties; and for live-in domestic workers, a description of the type and value of lodging provided, time of sleeping period, and personal time allotment. The DWERAA is awaiting an approved budget to go into effect.
- Prepare for tipped employee reporting.
- Provide sexual harassment training, as required.
- Update employee minimum wages and tipped minimum wages.
- Review background check procedures for compliance.
- Update parking benefit procedures for compliance.
- Update anti-discrimination policies for reproductive health protections.
- Implement domestic worker agreements.
- Have appropriate personnel trained on requirements.
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Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser. © 2023 ManagEase