by Mark I. Schickman
San Francisco’s new Retail Workers’ Bill of Rights is set to be implemented July 1, meaning many retail employers will have new obligations that go beyond areas that have previously been regulated.
The new law covers any retail establishment with 20 or more workers that shares a “formula” with at least 20 locations. A “formula” means the establishments have common signage or merchandise or design or trademark. Coverage goes beyond retail goods and includes banks, hotels, theaters, restaurants, and bars, which combine for an estimated 1,250 locations in San Francisco.
Under the new law, anyone buying a covered retail location must guarantee a job for the whole workforce for 90 days, absent cause for termination. Also, employers will have to offer more hours to incumbent part-time employees before hiring new employees or contractors. Employers needing specific skills that their current employees don’t have or employers needing a bigger group of people at a specific time should be prepared with those justifications before hiring new part-timers.
The law also requires employers to treat part-time employees equally with other employees in connection with wages, time off, and promotions. Also, before an employee starts a job, the employer must make a good-faith estimate of the anticipated number and length of monthly shifts the employee will receive. Then the employer must provide at least two weeks’ advance notice of the actual shift schedule.
For more information on the San Francisco Retail Workers’ Bill of Rights, see the January 26, 2015, issue of California Employment Law Letter.