ALBANY – New York State Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris announced on March 18 the Senate passage of legislation to ensure employees in New York State will be able to access paid leave if they are subject to a mandatory or precautionary quarantine due to the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). The Senate bill also waives the 7-day waiting period before New Yorkers can apply for unemployment insurance. This action builds on legislation passed by the Senate to allocate $40 million to help address the crisis.
“This is the first of many necessary steps required to help our neighbors survive this crisis,” said Senate Deputy Leader Gianaris. “The economic impact on working people will be immeasurable and we must do all we can to help.”
The legislation advanced by the Senate Majority, S.8091, will help every employee in the State by ensuring they receive paid leave and guaranteed job security if they have to undergo a mandatory or precautionary quarantine or isolation. This paid leave will last for the duration of their order and help ensure they are not financially hurt for helping contain the coronavirus pandemic. This legislation is another example of the Senate Majority’s work to support New York’s small businesses, as it will require state insurance programs to cover the full cost of workers’ salaries for New York’s smallest businesses, and everything following a week of leave for medium businesses.
- Businesses who have 10 or fewer employees as of January 1, 2020, and a net income under $1 million last fiscal year, will have the full cost of employee’s leave provided by New York State insurance programs, capped at benefits coverage equal to annual salaries of $150,000.
- Businesses who have 11-99 employees as of January 1, 2020, and businesses who have 10 or fewer employees but a net income greater than $1 million last fiscal year, will be required to provide 5 days of paid leave to their employees, and the rest of the required quarantine or isolation days provided by New York State insurance programs, capped at benefits coverage equal to annual salaries of $150,000.
- Businesses who have 100 or more employees, and all government institutions, will be required to cover at least 14 days of paid leave.