2021 CELA-Sponsored and Priority Bills
SB 331 (Senator Leyva) – This will expand the prohibition on non-disclosure agreements (“NDA’s”) in settlement agreements involving sexual harassment, sexual assault, and sex discrimination to cover settlement agreements involving all forms of harassment or discrimination. This bill will also expand the prohibition on overly broad confidentiality and non-disparagement clauses in employment agreements to cover workers who are required to sign these types of clauses as part of a severance agreement. Read some of the great press coverage below:
- CNN: A proposed law in California seeks to ban NDAs that prevent workers from speaking up about discrimination and abuse
- Protocol: New California law would give wronged workers a way out of NDAs
- Washington Post: NDAs have long been used to silence the abused, advocates say. A new law may change that.
- Fast Company: This California bill could help more tech whistleblowers speak out
- SF Chronicle: Silicon Valley likes to use NDAs. A California bill could let more employees speak out
AB 84 (Assemblymember Ting) /SB 95 (Senator Skinner) – These bills will extend emergency paid sick leave to all workers in California for reasons related to COVID-19 and, additionally, for reasons related to getting a COVID-19 vaccination. Click here to see the Department of Industrial Relation’s 2021 COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave FAQs.
AB 1041 (Wicks) – This bill will expand the definition of “family member” for purposes of paid sick leave and family and medical leave under the California Family Rights Act, to allow workers to take time off to care for a “designated person.” AB 1041 Fact Sheet
AB 1119 (Wicks) – This bill will prohibit discrimination against employees based on their family responsibilities and will ensure working families have access to reasonable accommodations to deal with school and care closures. Specifically, this bill will add “family responsibilities” to the list of protected categories under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and will also provide employees with caregiving responsibilities with the right to reasonable accommodations to deal with school or care closures under FEHA.
AB 95 (Low) – This bill will require employers with 25 or more employees to grant an employee 10 business days of unpaid bereavement leave upon the death of a family member. Employers with fewer than 25 employees will be required to grant 3 business days of bereavement leave. Sign up to support this bill by clicking here.
SB 321 (Durazo) – This bill will remove the unjust exclusion of domestic workers from California’s health and safety laws.
SB 762 (Senator Wieckowski) – This bill will strengthen recently enacted legislation (sponsored by CELA) that established that an employer is in breach of the arbitration agreement (and waives its right to compel or proceed in arbitration) if they do not pay their arbitration fees within 30 days of the due date. To ensure compliance, this bill will require the arbitration provider to send both parties a copy of the invoice with the due date.
2021 Bill Tracking: Click here to see all of the labor and employment bills CELA is tracking.
2020 CELA-Sponsored and Priority Bills
Retaliation and Whistleblower Protections (AB 1947 Assemblymember Kalra): This bill will extend the filing deadline for administrative retaliation complaints from 6 months to 1 year. The bill will also allow workers to recover their attorneys fees if they prevail in a whistleblower action under Labor Code Section 1102.5. Signed!
Family Leave (SB 1383 Senator Jackson): This bill would expand the California Family Rights Act to cover all employers with 5 or more employees and to additionally allow employees to use unpaid job protected leave to care for a domestic partner, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, or parent-in-law who has a serious health condition. For claims against employers with 5-19 employees, parties must participate in mediation through the Department of Fair Employment and Housing before a civil action can be filed. Signed!
Pay Data Reporting to Close the Gender and Race Wage Gap (SB 973 Senator Jackson): The COVID-19 pandemic is highlighting the consistent undervaluing of women’s work and the ways in which gender- and race-based pay disparities put women (particularly women of color) at higher risk of economic insecurity and contribute to higher poverty rates overall. This bill would help close the gender wage gap by requiring California employers with 100 employees or more to submit an annual pay data report to the state outlining the compensation and hours worked of its employees by gender, race, ethnicity, and job category. Signed!
Right to Recall and Right to Retention (AB 3216 Assemblymembers Kalra & Gonzalez): AB 3216 ensures the right of recall and retention for workers in hotels, event centers, airports, and building services – industries hardest hit by the shelter-at-home rules. Vetoed (a veto message can be found here).
Domestic Workers’ Health and Safety (SB 1257 Senator Durazo): COVID-19 has presented many health and safety risks, particularly for domestic workers who are caring for our sick and elderly. Unfortunately, domestic workers are exempt from our health and safety laws under Cal/OSHA. This bill would get rid of this unjust exemption to help ensure domestic workers have basic health and safety protections. Vetoed (a veto message can be found here).
2020 Bill Tracking: 2020 California Labor and Employment Legislation Signed Into Law (updated October 1, 2020)
2020 Bill Tracking: Top 20 Signed Employment Bills of 2020 (plus notable vetoes and failed bills) (updated September 2, 2020)