The current pandemic has brought us into unprecedented times and extreme challenges, including economically. Unprecedented times and money troubles often have the potential to stoke fear and division, and fear and division can often lead to discrimination. To fend off that risk, the State of New Jersey has passed new laws to protect workers from illegal workplace discrimination in this time of COVID-19. If you think you’ve been the recipient of illegal mistreatment at your job, be sure to reach to an experienced New Jersey employment attorney to find out more about your options.
One of the newest laws designed to curb discrimination and harassment is AB 3848, which Governor Murphy signed into law on March 20. That law, which took effect immediately upon the governor’s signature, limits what an employer can do to an employee who takes COVID-19-related leave from work. Specifically, the new law forbids employers from firing or refusing to reinstate employees that took leave at the recommendation of their health providers because they had (or potentially had) COVID-19.
Of course, as is true of many types of employment law disputes, one of the big keys to having a winning case is having followed all of the mandatory procedural steps and having documented proof that you did so. For example, say you experienced symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and became concerned about your health and the health of those around you. You went to a licensed New Jersey health professional and he/she recommended that you miss work for a period of time.