Bill aims to protect feds' accrued PTO
- By Sherkiya Wedgeworth
- Oct 02, 2020
A group of Democratic lawmakers has introduced legislation that would allow federal workers to carry over their leave during a future pandemic.
“During this pandemic, our nation’s federal workers—including researchers at NIH, workers at IRS and so many others—have been working hard to help fight the virus, provide important services, and keep us safe,” Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) said in a statement, continuing, “They’ve been going above and beyond—and it’s unacceptable that their non-stop hard work could mean that they lose the paid leave they have earned.”
Federal workers that accrue over 240 hours of annual leave either lose the hours above the cap or have to to use it before the end of the year.
Using leave hours during a pandemic may not be possible because a worker provides a critical government service for taxpayers, needs to limit exposure to COVID-19, or follows state and local restrictions to limit the spread of the virus, according to the statement.
“No workers should be stripped of benefits during a pandemic—and that absolutely includes public servants who are working on behalf of the American people,” Murray added.
The Federal Worker Leave Fairness Act would allow all federal workers to carry over the leave they have accrued when a national pandemic prevents employees from taking time off from work.
Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.), Jennifer Wexton (D-Va.), Don Beyer (D-Va.), Ed Case (D-Hawaii), and Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) introduced the legislation.