Is Seattle’s scheduling ordinance stricter than that proposed in the Legislature?

By: Emily Makings
12:32 pm
January 31, 2020

Gov. Inslee’s 2020 supplemental budget proposal assumes passage of SSB 5717, which would require employees in food service, hospitality, and retail get 14 days’ notice of their schedules and be compensated for schedule changes. Yesterday the Labor & Commerce Committee heard a proposed substitute bill. Some of the differences in the proposed bill compared to SSB 5717 are:

  • The requirements would be phased in based on the size of employer so that they apply on Jan. 1, 2021 for employers with 500 or more employees; on Jan. 1, 2022 for employers with at least 250 but fewer than 500 employees; and on Jan. 1, 2023 for franchisees with fewer than 250 employees.
  • Rather than requiring employers to give existing employees five days’ notice of the opportunity to work more hours (before hiring new employees), the proposal would require that employees give their employer a statement with their desired number of hours and the times they are available for work. Before hiring new employees, employers would have to “make every effort to schedule existing employees,” based on their statement of desired hours. New employees could be hired if no existing employees are available or they lack necessary qualifications. If a new employee is hired within an existing employee’s availability, the existing employee would have to be compensated for the hours worked by the new employee.
  • The scheduling requirements could be waived in a collective bargaining agreement.

In the Labor & Commerce Committee meeting, Sen. Saldaña said that many of the businesses that would be affected are “in the city of Seattle, already abiding by a stricter version of secure scheduling.” The table below compares Seattle’s ordinance to P2SSB 5717. In some respects, that may be true, but P2SSB 5717 would certainly apply more broadly.

Categories: Categories , Employment Policy.