As we discussed in a recent blog post, available here, the New Jersey Security and Financial Empowerment (“SAFE”) Act went into effect on October 1, 2013. The SAFE Act applies to employers with 25 or more employees and provides up to 20 days of unpaid leave to any employee who is a victim of a domestic violence incident or a sexually violent offense or to any employee whose child, parent, spouse or partner is the victim of such an incident.
The SAFE Act requires employers to post a notice of employees’ rights and obligations under the Act in a conspicuous location in the workplace and to use other appropriate means to notify employees of their rights under the Act. The Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development recently issued a notice that employers can post and distribute to their employers. The notice is available here.
As a reminder, employers are prohibited from discriminating or retaliating against employees who exercise their rights under the SAFE Act. The Act permits employees to file a private right of action to recover damages and attorneys’ fees against employers who violate the Act. It also provides for civil fines for violations.
Employers should update their leave policies, post the required notice and train their managers and human resources personnel to understand the nature of and obligations under the SAFE Act.