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Unlike California and New York, the NJ SAFE Act did not amend the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) to include victims of domestic violence or sexual assault as a protected class.
Regardless, employers should continue to be mindful of how state and federal law may apply to employment situations involving employees who are the victims of domestic violence or sexual assault.
The poster containing employee rights under the NJ SAFE Act is now available on the NJ DOL's website.
The form poster must be conspicuously posted by October 1. and a handful of local governments in providing victims of domestic violence or sexual assault with the right to take unpaid leave.
If an employee requests leave for a reason that is also covered by the FMLA or the NJFLA, employers may count the leave against an FMLA or NJFLA entitlement and run it concurrently with the employee’s entitlement under each respective law.Additionally, it will publish interpretive regulations regarding the proper implementation of the new law.In the few months before the law goes into effect, and until the Department of Labor implements its regulations, employers should consult with counsel to ensure that all policies are up to date and disseminated to all employees and personnel, and to otherwise ensure compliance with these new statutory obligations.The unpaid leave may be taken intermittently in intervals of at least one day, within the 12-month period following the qualifying incident.Each qualifying incident is a separate offense for which an employee is entitled to unpaid leave, provided he or she has not exhausted the allotted 20 days for the 12-month period.
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Effective October 1, 2013, the NJ SAFE Act will provide eligible employees with unpaid time off to attend to a variety of matters related to an act of domestic violence or sexual assault committed against the employee or a family or household member.