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San Francisco Paid Public Health Emergency Leave Effective October 1, 2022
Jul 26, 2022

San Francisco Paid Public Health Emergency Leave Effective October 1, 2022

Topics: COVID-19, Employee Leave, New Laws & Legislation


On July 7, 2022, voters in San Francisco, California voted in favor of Proposition G, a paid public health emergency leave. The ordinance becomes operative on October 1, 2022 and updates the original Public Health Emergency leave ordinance. Prop G expanded the scope of paid leave from COVID-19 to additional areas where paid leave is required. Additionally, Prop G has reduced the employee count threshold for covered employers as described below. Further, this ordinance is in addition to any paid leave employers provide for their employees. San Francisco’s Office of Labor Standards Enforcement (SF OLSE) is expected to develop additional guidelines and rules.

Who it Applies To

  • Any private employer with more than 100 employees worldwide. 
  • Any employee for a covered employer who works in the City and County of San Francisco.

Covered Areas

This ordinance requires paid leave:

  1. Where the employee or their family member is unable to work due to the advice or requirements of a health order addressing a public emergency.
  2. Where the employee or their family member experiences symptoms of the disease-causing the emergency (i.e., COVID-19) or tests positive for the disease and should be quarantined.
  3. Where the employee primarily works outdoors and has heart or lung disease, has respiratory problems, is pregnant, or is at least 60 years of age when there is an air quality emergency.

Additionally, an employee may choose to use public health emergency leave or paid sick leave in circumstances where both could apply. Any unused public health emergency leave does not carry over to the next year.

Amount of Leave 

Starting on October 1, 2022, and then at the start of each new year (January 1), employers must provide up to 80 hours of paid Public Health Emergency Leave per year. There are various calculations for determining how many hours an employee is entitled to paid public health emergency leave, depending on the employee’s status (full-time versus part-time). Covered employers with workers in San Francisco should take steps to comply with Prop. G when it becomes effective.   

If you have any questions regarding how to comply with the new ordinance, please contact your favorite CDF attorney.

About CDF

For over 25 years, CDF has distinguished itself as one of the top employment, labor and immigration firms in California, representing employers in single-plaintiff and class action lawsuits and advising employers on related legal compliance and risk avoidance. We cover the state, with five locations from Sacramento to San Diego.

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About the Editor in Chief

Sacramento Office Managing Partner and Chair of CDF’s Traditional Labor Law Practice Group. Mark has been practicing labor and employment law in California for thirty years. His practice has a special emphasis on the representation of California employers in union-management relations and handling federal and state court litigation and administrative matters triggered by all types of employment-related disputes. He is also adept at providing creative and practical legal advice to help minimize the risks inherent in employing workers in California. He recently named “Sacramento Lawyer of the Year” in Employment Law-Management for 2021 by Best Lawyers®.
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