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  • NJ A1117
  • Establishes the "New Jersey Schedules That Work Act."
Introduced
(1/27/2016)
In Committee
(4/4/2016)
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/Vetoed
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill enacts the "New Jersey Schedules That Work Act." The bill provides that employees may request a change to their work schedules without fear of retaliation, and requires that employers consider these requests. The bill also requires employers to provide more predictable and stable schedules for employees in certain low wage occupations. For purposes of the bill, "employer" is defined as any employer that employs 15 or more employees. The bill permits employees to apply to their employer to request a change in the terms and conditions of employment as they relate to the following: the number of hours the employee is required to work or be on call for work; the times when the employee is required to work or be on call for work; the location where the employee is required to work; the amount of notification the employee receives of work schedule assignments; and minimizing fluctuations in the number of hours the employee is scheduled to work on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. If an employee applies to the employer to request a change in the terms and conditions of employment, then the employer must engage in a timely, good faith interactive process with the employee that includes a discussion of potential schedule changes that would meet the employee's needs. This process must result in the employer either granting or denying the request. The bill provides that if an employee makes a request for a change in the terms and conditions of employment because of a serious health condition of the employee, due to the employee's responsibilities as a caregiver, or due to the employee's enrollment in a career related educational or training program, or if a part time employee makes a request for such a change for a reason related to a second job, then the employer must grant the request, unless the employer has a bona fide business reason for denying the request. The bill also requires an employer to pay any retail, food service, or cleaning employee the following: 1. At least four hours at the employee's regular rate of pay for each day on which the retail, food service, or cleaning employee reports for work under specific instructions but is given less than four hours of work, except that if the retail, food service, or cleaning employee's scheduled hours are less than four hours, the retail, food service, or cleaning employee must be paid for the employee's scheduled hours for that day if given less than the scheduled hours of work; and 2. At least one hour at the employee's regular rate of pay for each day the retail, food service, or cleaning employee is given specific instructions to contact the employer, or wait to be contacted by the employer, less than 24 hours in advance of the start of a potential work shift to determine whether the employee must report to work for that shift. An employer must pay any retail, food service, or cleaning employee one additional hour at the employee's regular rate of pay for each day during which the employee works a split shift. The bill also requires an employer to provide any retail, food service, or cleaning employee the following advance notification regarding the employee's work schedule: 1. On or before a new employee's first day of work, in writing, the employee's work schedule and minimum number of expected work hours the employee will be assigned to work per month; and 2. A new work schedule, in writing, not less than 14 days before the first day of the new work schedule if the employee's work schedule changes from the work schedule for which the employee was previously notified as a new employee, and if the minimum number of work hours the employee will be assigned changes, then the employer shall provide notification of that change, not less than 14 days in advance of the first day the change will go into effect. The bill provides that an employer of any retail, food service, or cleaning employee may make work schedule changes as needed, including by offering additional hours of work to the employee beyond those previously scheduled, but an employer must provide one extra hour of pay at the retail, food service, or cleaning employee's regular rate for each shift that is changed with less than 24 hours' notice, except in the case of the need to schedule the employee due to the unforeseen unavailability of an employee previously scheduled to work that shift. The bill requires every employer employing any retail, food service, or cleaning employee to post the work schedule and keep it posted in a conspicuous place in every establishment where any retail, food service, or cleaning employee is employed so as to permit the employee to observe it. The bill makes it an unlawful employment practice for any employer to interfere with, restrain, or deny the exercise or the attempt to exercise, any right of an employee as set forth in the bill. Under the bill, it is unlawful for any employer to discharge, threaten to discharge, demote, suspend, reduce work hours of, or take any other adverse employment action against any employee in retaliation for exercising the rights of an employee under the bill or opposing any practice made unlawful by the bill. The Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development may file a complaint on behalf of an employee, and may also assess a civil penalty to be paid by an employer who violates the provisions of the bill. The bill also provides that an employee may institute a civil action in the Superior Court for relief. However, the right of an employee to institute a civil action shall terminate upon the filing of a complaint by the commissioner. The bill requires every employer subject to the provisions of the bill to post and keep conspicuously posted, in the establishment and location where notices or postings to employees and applicants for employment are customarily posted, a notice setting forth the pertinent provisions of the bill. Finally, the bill states that nothing contained therein will be construed to preempt, limit, or otherwise affect the applicability of any other federal, State or local law, ordinance, regulation, requirement, policy, or standard that provides rights or benefits to employees which are more favorable to employees than those required by the bill or which provide rights or benefits to employees not covered by the bill.
2nd Reading in the Assembly, Women and Children
Reported out of Assembly Committee, 2nd Reading  (on 4/4/2016)
 
 

Date Chamber Action Description
4/4/2016 A Reported out of Assembly Committee, 2nd Reading
4/4/2016 Assembly Women and Children Hearing (10:00 4/4/2016 Committee Room 9, 3rd Floor)
1/27/2016 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Women and Children Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
Detail 4/4/2016 Assembly Women and Children Committee: Reported Favorably 4 2 0