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State Agencies Address Common Return-To-Work Questions

Posted by tia.taylor | May 21, 2020

ESD, L&I publish guidance for common workplace safety concerns and employment scenarios.

The Employment Security Department has published Employer FAQ and Worker FAQto address common questions as businesses resume operations. The Department of Labor and Industries has published a Paid Sick Leave FAQ. The two agencies worked together to establish a Paid Family and Medical Leave FAQ. Combined, these FAQ address a range of possible scenarios that may unfold as workplaces resume operations.

Questions involving work refusal and unemployment eligibility have been especially frequent.

Workers collecting unemployment must have a good cause reason to refuse work and continue to receive regular unemployment benefits. Good cause reasons include: membership in a CDC-specified high-risk category, sharing a household or providing direct care for a high-risk category member, or returning to a worksite that does not follow government safety guidelines.

Workers that refuse work in order to care for a child that is unable to attend school or daycare due to pandemic-related closure are eligible for expanded unemployment benefits under Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) or the federal CARES Act.

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