Numerous types of leave benefits are available to benefited employees depending on their collective bargaining unit or non-unit status. Some examples (although not applicable to all collective bargaining units) are education, sabbatical, military, maternity, family, and parental leave. Please reference your appropriate collective bargaining agreement for details on what leaves are available. Below please find the College’s policies regarding the Domestic Violence Act, Family Medical Leave Act, Small Necessities Leave Act, and the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act. Any questions can be sent to Kathryn Oram, Director of Benefits and Payroll, email@example.com.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
On March 18, 2020, the Senate passed, and President Trump signed into law, a bill that affords employees some economic relief during the COVID-19 crisis. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act contains two significant leave provisions that we believe apply to MassArt. Specifically, these two leave provisions are:
1. the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act, which extends and expands the protection of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), including providing a paid leave benefit, to employees who are unable to work because they are caring for children who are home because school closure or unavailability of childcare provider due to the coronavirus,
2. the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act, which provides a ten-day new paid sick leave entitlement for certain coronavirus-related absences.
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act takes effect on April 1, 2020, and expires on December 31, 2020.
You can find out more by reviewing the attached poster and looking at the DOL's Wage and Hour Division, COVID-19 page (en español: Licencia Laboral Pagada bajo Ley Familias Primero de Respuesta al Coronavirus). The DOL also has a new online portal to determine if you qualify.
If you have any questions or need any further assistance, please contact Human Resources. If you would like to request leave through the FFCRA, please complete the Request for Leave in NeoGov eForms or return the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Request Form or the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Request Form to Kathryn Oram, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
Under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), eligible employees are entitled to leave: a) for the birth, adoption, foster care, or serious health condition of a child; b) to care for a parent or spouse who has a serious health condition; c) for a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform her/his job; d) because of a qualifying exigency arising out of the fact that a spouse, child or parent is on active duty or call to active duty status in support of a contingency operation as a member of the National Guard or Reserves; or e) because a spouse, child, parent or next of kin of a covered service member with a serious injury or illness. When the employee is ready to return to work, other than key employees, s/he will be restored to the same or an equivalent position with equivalent pay, benefits, and other employment terms.
The FMLA requires up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave be granted to employees who have more than 1 year of service, and have worked at least 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months. This is a rolling 12-month period and is measured forward from the first day FMLA leave is taken. All paid and unpaid leave taken for FMLA purposes will be counted toward the 12-week FMLA entitlement. These 12 weeks of leave can be taken intermittently instead of being taken at one time. The 12 weeks of leave can be spread out over a 12-month period. Employees must get certification by a health care provider that the employee, her/his child, parent or spouse in fact has a serious health condition, the condition’s expected duration, and the need for the employee to be absent from work to attend to the family member. Although the FMLA requires only unpaid leave, it does impose certain requirements with respect to benefits. The College currently requires employees to substitute any accrued sick leave, vacation leave, personal leave or compensatory time for unpaid FMLA leave. The substitution of accrued paid leave does not extend the 12-week leave period. While on FMLA employees are permitted to continue to participate in health benefits plans.
In most cases, FMLA leave runs concurrently with other types of leave, including but not limited to, Massachusetts Maternity Leave, Parental Leave, and Long-Term Disability Leave and other leaves included in the collective bargaining agreements.
Employees are required to request FMLA leave at least thirty days in advance if the need can be anticipated. Otherwise, employees should request the leave as soon as they become aware of the need for such leave. A form to request FMLA and to obtain the certification is available through the human resources office. The human resources office will also be glad to answer any questions you may have regarding this policy. Please contact the director of benefits and payroll at ext. 7908.
Domestic Violence Act
Under the Domestic Violence Act, an employer shall permit an employee to take up to 15 days of leave from work in any 12 month period if:
(i) The employee, or a family member of the employee, is a victim of abusive behavior;
(ii) The employee is using the leave from work to: seek or obtain medical attention, counseling, victim services or legal assistance; secure housing; obtain a protective order from a court; appear in court or before a grand jury; meet with a district attorney or other law enforcement official; or attend child custody proceedings or address other issues directly related to the abusive behavior against the employee or family member of the employee; and
(iii) The employee is not the perpetrator of the abusive behavior against such employee’s family member. Link to the Domestic Violence Act: https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartI/TitleXXI/Chapter149/Section52E
The human resources office can answer any questions you may have regarding this policy. Please contact the director of benefits and payroll at ext. 7908.
Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act (MMLA) – Pregnancy – Maternity Leave
Whenever an employee who has been employed with the College for at least three (3) months becomes pregnant, and requests maternity leave, she shall furnish the College with a certificate from her physician stating the expected due date of her delivery. The employee may continue to work so long as her physician certifies that she is able to do so. Maternity leave without pay shall be granted, commencing with cessation of actual work under the preceding sentence, for the purpose of giving birth for a period not to exceed eight (8) weeks (per child). The employee may choose to use any accumulated vacation, sick leave and/or other leave time for maternity leave purposes. If an employee elects maternity leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act, the College will run the MMLA benefit concurrently with the benefits allowed under the Family and Medical Leave Act. For more information please contact the director of benefits and payroll at ext. 7908.
Small Necessities Leave Act (SNLA)
In addition to the FMLA, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has enacted the Small Necessities Leave Act (SNLA) expanding on the rights granted by the Family and Medical Leave Act. The SNLA grants eligible employees a total of 24 hours of unpaid leave during any 12-month period over and above the leave granted under the FMLA. The types of leave covered by this act include leave:
a) To participate in school activities directly related to the educational advancement of your son or daughter, OR
b) To accompany your child or elderly* relative to routine medical or dental appointments, or for other professional health care services relating to elder care.
(*Someone at least 60 years old and related by blood or marriage.)
If you have accumulated sick, personal, or vacation credits at the commencement of your SNL, you may use such credits for which you may be eligible under applicable rules. The Act does not require the College to provide paid sick leave or paid medical leave in any situation where the College would not normally provide such leave. Questions may be directed to the director of benefits and payroll at ext. 7908.
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