New Fair Chance Law bans Washington employers from asking about criminal history

On Tuesday March 13, 2018, Governor Inslee signed into law a bill that would ban employers from adding that “box” that asks about one’s criminal background history during the initial application process.

Under House Bill 1298, an employer may no do the following:

  • include any question on any job application;
  • inquire either orally or in writing;
  • receive information through a criminal history background check;
  • or otherwise obtain information;

about an applicant’s criminal record until after the employer initially determines that the applicant is otherwise qualified for the position.

Once the employer has initially determined that the applicant is otherwise qualified, the employer may inquire into or obtain information about a criminal record.

An employer may not advertise employment openings in a way that excludes people with criminal records from applying. Ads that state “no felons,” “no criminal background,” or otherwise convey similar messages are prohibited.

An employer may not implement any policy or practice that automatically or categorically excludes individuals with a criminal record from consideration prior to an initial determination that the applicant is otherwise qualified for the position.

Exemptions 
Certain employers are exempt (§ 4) from these prohibitions, including employers who are expressly permitted or required under federal or state law to inquire into or consider information about an applicant’s or employee’s criminal record for employment purposes. This would include jobs in law enforcement, state agencies, schools and other businesses that supervise children, persons with disabilities and vulnerable adults.

The law is expected to take effect on June 6, 2018. Additional provisions are contained in the text of the law.

For the sake of our All In One Posters, it has not been determined at this moment whether a mandatory notice is required to be posted.

Washington Paid Sick Leave Notification Form Now Available

Originally posted by HR360

Model Notice Now Available

Washington has released an employee paid sick leave notification form (“notice”) that is compliant with the state paid sick leave rules.

Notice Requirements
Employers must provide employees with a notice regarding their rights under the sick leave law. The notice may be provided in written or electronic form, and its contents must be made readily available to all employees.

For existing employees (already working before January 1, 2018), the notice must be provided no later than March 1, 2018. For new employees (hired on or after January 1, 2018), the notice must be provided no later than the commencement of employment.

Background
An employer generally must provide each of its employees paid sick leave at the greater of the increased minimum wageor the employee’s normal wage. An employee accrues at least one hour of paid sick leave for every 40 hours workedand may use paid sick leave for certain purposes.

Click here for additional paid sick leave information and resources (e.g., sample policies and FAQs). Additional notice requirements are available by clicking here.

No Fooling Seattle Workers About April 1st Minimum Wage Increase

A huge victory for Seattle Minimum Wage Earners as they see a significant increase in their paychecks beginning April Fools Day 2015. Despite their efforts, Seattle franchises were not able to win against minimum wage employees. U.S District Judge Richard Jones declined the franchises’ request to prevent measures on the minimum wage law. Effective today, April 1, 2015, minimum wage employees in Seattle will see their pay increase from $9.47 to $11 per hour.

The franchises were claiming that being required to raise wages at a faster pace than small businesses puts them at risk of going out of business. The judge rejected their argument, stating that no actual evidence exists of the alleged negative impact.

Approximately 19,000 workers in Seattle will be affected by the minimum wage increase. The plan to raise the city’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2017 was approved last year. Businesses with fewer than 500 employees will have until 2021 to meet the $15 per hour requirement.Seattle Minimum Wage Increase Photo

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray was in support of the ruling, claiming a large victory for fast food workers who have been consistently pushing for higher wages.

Despite this ruling, the International Franchise Association (IFA) has vowed to continue fighting for their franchises that will be affected by the wage increase. They called the judge’s decision a “disappointment.”

In previous articles, we have discussed the continuing prominence of minimum wage increase across the nation. These trends highlight the importance of staying informed on all possible changes or ordinances passed in your business’ locality. Managing a business provides a myriad of difficulties, and constantly utilizing extra time to research compliance matters can be detrimental to a business owner. Let All In One Posters do the researching for you. The knowledgeable and experienced staff can assist you with all your labor law and compliance concerns, while also providing the most professional and accurate posters for your workplace.

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