If you have a company in Oregon or if you are someone who works as a Labor in Oregon, then you must become familiar with the Labor laws of the state. Companies in Oregon have to comply with these Oregon labor laws in addition to the federal laws. These labor laws are responsible for governing proper working conditions and compensation management amongst companies in Oregon.
Oregon Labor Laws and why you should learn about them?
There is a wide range of employment situations such as leaves, breaks, pay, discrimination, payroll taxes, and workplace safety. You can also opt for Oregon payroll Service companies like HR Consultant, GNSA and leverage them. They can help you understand and hence comply with the labor laws of the state. Knowing the basics of the Labor laws in Oregon can help you surpass any professional hurdles you may come across.
From an organization’s perspective, it is mandatory for them to know about these laws and comply with them. It will help them maintain employee satisfaction among their laborers and promote a healthy work environment within their workshops and offices. Through this article, we intend to inform you about the basic concepts of Oregon’s labor laws and how they can benefit your profession.
1. Discrimination Laws
Let us start with the all-important Harassment and discrimination policy under Oregon Workplace Fairness Act or the OWFA. The act became effective on and from 10th Jan 2020 and required all employers in Oregon to possess a discrimination and harassment policy in writing. This policy must contain practices and procedures for preventing and reducing acts of discrimination against policy-protected individuals. The protected individual’s categories can be any of the following.
- Sexual orientation
- Marital status
- Expunged juvenile record
- Physical or mental disability
- Uniformed duty performance
The policies that are created under the OWFA must provide and encompass the following aspects.
- Provide a description of the new statute of limitations that apply to every employee’s claims regarding prohibited conduct.
- Describe a process for reporting such prohibited acts and identify the responsible persons in the organization for registering complaints. There must be alternate persons mentioned in cases where the designated person is unavailable.
- Provide an explanation that the person claiming harassment, discrimination, or assault may request for a voluntary agreement providing non-disclosure language and a no rehire provision.
- State that the concerned employer may not coerce the employee to request a non-disclosure agreement.
- Suggest and advise both employees and employers to document every incident that involves prohibited conduct by the OWFA.
Oregon Labor laws have also created a sample policy of the OWFA for the convenience of employers. It’s available in both English and Spanish dialects. Employers must ensure that the OWFA policy is available to every employee inside their workplace. This means that every new employee must have a copy of the same company policy when the company hires them. The company must also provide a similar copy when someone from the organization lodges a complaint of discrimination.
2. Oregon Leave Laws
The Leaves laws of Oregon fall under the OFLA (Oregon Family leaves act). It states that employers must allow employees to take a maximum of 12 weeks of unpaid leave. This is applicable provided the employee can showcase an average of 25 hours a week for the last six months. The employer also has to have a minimum of 25 employees working in the organization.
The OFLA covers a list of leaves that are mentioned below.
- Health concerns – If the employee suffers from a serious health condition restricting him from pursuing official duties.
- Parental leaves – If the employee can opt for parental leaves for adoption or birth of a child.
- Pregnancy disability leave – Employees have the option to take leaves for taking prenatal or post-birth care of the child.
- Military Family leave – Employees can take up to two weeks leave if the spouse is servicing the military and is on active duty leave.
- Bereavement leave – If an employee’s spouse, custodial or non-custodial parent dies, then one can opt for a Bereavement plan.
Under the guidance of OFLA, employers have to continue providing health insurance benefits to employees when they are on leave. Moreover, when the employee returns to work and if the former position no longer exists, then the employer must provide similar position jobs to the employee.
3. Oregon compensation laws
Finally and most importantly, we arrive at the Oregon compensation laws for laborers. The compensation laws encompass the following aspects that are discussed in brief below.
The geographic region determines the minimum wage that an employee should receive. The correct wage of an employer directly depends on the location of work. By minimum wage, we refer to the wage of the county where the employee works more than half of their working hours. The minimum wage in non-urban counties differs from that of standard counties. Employers also have the option to pay the minimum wages for every county the employee works for.
The OFLA states that every employer must pay their employees at least 1.5 times their standard pay for every hour worked in excess of 40 hours in a week. Many employees get the benefit of overtime pay if they work for 10 hours a day.
Employers in Oregon must pay their employees equally irrespective of their race, nationality, marital status, religion, color, etc. They may not achieve this equal pay by virtue of pay cuts.
The OFLA further instructs employers to pay their employees in regular intervals not exceeding 35 days. Additionally, employers might not withhold their paycheck and delay them by means of discipline or even against any employee-owned items.
The labor laws in Oregon are quite specific and may vary in geographic locations. They provide a means of guidance to the employer and protection to the employees and cover almost all employment situations. If you are an employer or employee in Oregon, you must understand the various Labor laws to ensure that all concerned are adhering to them.