Paid Family & Medical Leave is Coming to Washington State

On behalf of Sheryl Gordon:

Starting in 2020, Washington State will be the fifth state in the nation to offer paid family and medical leave to workers.  Washington State passed legislation in 2017 that established the “Paid Family and Medical Leave” (PFML) program that offers Washington workers the opportunity to receive partial wage replacement while on leave for qualifying family and/or medical events after establishing eligibility. This insurance program will allow workers to take up to 12 weeks, as needed, when they welcome a new child into their family, experience a serious illness, need to take care of a sick relative, and for certain military connected events.  If workers experience multiple events in a given year, they may be eligible to receive up to 16 weeks, or up to 18 weeks if the employee experiences a serious health condition with a pregnancy that results in incapacity.

Premiums

Washington’s Paid Family and Medical Leave Program is organized as an insurance program, and like most insurance programs, it is funded through premiums.  Beginning on January 1, 2019, most employers will be required to withhold premiums from their employee’s paychecks, and many employers will be required to pay into the program too.

As directed by the Legislature, premium assessment begins on January 1, 2019 and benefits can be applied for starting January 1, 2020.

Great News

Green River College is opting to pay both the employer and the employee premiums to fund this new Paid Family & Medical Leave program! 

Details on How It Will Work

Eligible Washington workers will be able to use Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits starting in 2020.  The application and benefit payment process will be managed by the Washington State Employment Security Department.  For more information about PFML, go to www.paidleave.wa.gov

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Holiday Campus Closings

Greetings Green River Colleagues!J-Happy-Holidays

The holidays will soon be upon us and we’d like to share this year’s holiday schedule. Our campus will be closed to the public beginning at noon on Monday, December 24, 2018 and Monday, December 31, 2018.   Employees should plan to work their entire regular shift on those days or, if on approved leave, submit vacation, personal holiday, or other appropriate paid leave for the hours of their entire regular shift not worked. Have a great holiday season!

Janus case information

As many of you will recall, last month the Supreme Court sent down a ruling that gavelprevents public employers and unions from requiring bargaining unit members to pay an agency fee or representation fee. If you are a member of a bargaining unit, you may have questions about how this affects you. The Office of Financial Management has posted a very detailed list of FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) that should prove helpful in answering some of your most common questions. Please refer to the link below for more information!

OFM Janus FAQ list

Summer Hours are a-comin!

Last month, we let you know about the upcoming summer hours for campus. As a little reminder, here’s some information about what will happen beginning July 9:3-2-sun-png-clipart

  • Summer hours begin the week of 09 July (the week after Independence Day).
  • Summer hours run through the week of 27 August (meaning that regular hours resume the week of Labor Day).
  • The summer campus hours shall be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m Monday-Thursday (our current hours are indicated here on the website: https://www.greenriver.edu/campus/).  Not all shifts will align directly with the hours as there may be personal, departmental, or support needs that fall outside of those hours.
  • The default work week for all employees shall be four (4) 10 hour shifts from Monday through Thursday.  Certain departments may have needs outside of those hours and will work with employees directly to set shift expectations.
    • Employees who cannot work the four (4) 10 hour shifts should contact their direct manager and their Employee & Labor Relations person (either Barbara or Chernenko).  Employees who cannot work the shift may be defaulted to five (5) 8 hour shifts.

As a note:

  • employees may request of their manager a schedule adjustment (for WFSE employees, this is 7.3 (B)(4)) at any time.  Schedule adjustments will be considered by the manager in coordination with Human Resources and may be granted if business needs can be met.
  • employees may request vacation time using the same college and departmental policies and procedures in place.

Summer Hours are on the way!

3-2-sun-png-clipartThough we’re enjoying some fantastic spring weather, our minds can’t help but turn to (what we hope will be) an even better summer season! With that in mind, here are the guidelines for summer hours this year:

  • Summer hours begin the week of 09 July (the week after Independence Day).
  • Summer hours run through the week of 27 August (meaning that regular hours resume the week of Labor Day).
  • The campus hours (current hours as indicated here on the website: https://www.greenriver.edu/campus/) shall be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Not all shifts will align directly with the hours as there may be personal, departmental, or support needs that fall outside of those hours.
  • The default work week for all employees shall be four (4) 10 hour shifts from Monday through Thursday.  Certain departments may have needs outside of those hours and will work with employees directly to set shift expectations.
    • Employees who cannot work the four (4) 10 hour shifts should contact their direct manager and their Employee & Labor Relations person (either Barbara or Chernenko).  Employees who cannot work the shift may be defaulted to five (5) 8 hour shifts.

As a note:

  • employees may request of their manager a schedule adjustment (for WFSE employees, this is 7.3 (B)(4)) at any time.  Schedule adjustments will be considered by the manager in coordination with Human Resources and may be granted if business needs can be met.
  • employees may request vacation time using the same college and departmental policies and procedures in place.

Classified Staff In-Service Day

On behalf of the Classified Training and Development Committee, we invite all classified staff to a workshop focused on equity, diversity and inclusion issues in the workplace. February 6, 2018 will feature two options for attending this workshop: 10a-11:30a and 2:30-4pm in the SU River Room (supervisors: make note that, while areas should remain open, employees should be given the time to attend one session). Below is a little bit of information about our day’s facilitator, Debi Jenkins!

Debra (Debi) Jenkins has over twenty years of experience transforming lives as an innovative developmental life coach, teacher and, presenter. Debi is a tenured professor of Early Childhood Education and Psychology, Department Head of Early Childhood Education, and Chair of the Behavioral Sciences Division at Clark College. Debi is also a Qualified Administrator of the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) and the Intercultural Development Plan which are effective developmental coaching tools. Debi’s expertise in life coaching, teaching and presenting is in the areas of lifespan development; issues of diversity, justice, equity, and inclusion; and institutional climate/ organizational change.Debi Jenkins

 At the core of my Share the Flame work reside the questions: How do I nurture the souls of those individuals who are in my sphere of influence? How do I engage them in reconciling the various complexities of their multi-contextual lives with the work of social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion? And how do I cultivate the importance of self-care to preserve their commitment to their work, families, and collective communities? ~ Debra (Debi) Jenkins

It’s Open Enrollment Time!

OPEN ENROLLMENT RUNS FROM NOVEMBER 1st – 30th

Changes you can make:Open Enrollment

  • Change your medical or dental plan, including waiving for an eligible reason;
  • Add or remove an eligible dependent;
  • Enroll or re-enroll in Medical Flexible Spending or Dependent Care Assistance Program

For more detailed information, see the latest For Your Benefit Newsletter:

https://www.hca.wa.gov/assets/pebb/state-higher-education-newsletter-1710.pdf