As we approach November 2022, it is necessary for all organizations to review laws and regulations regarding voting leave laws. I highly encourage all organizations to review current policies, procedures, and postings. New York State has specific regulations on when postings need to be up in the workplace, in a breakroom or virtual.
“Employees will be considered to have sufficient time to vote outside their scheduled work hours if they have four consecutive hours between the polls opening and the beginning of their work shift, or four hours after the polls close. Employees who need time to vote need to communicate the request to HR or management prior to the day of voting, per New York State and federal law. PTO time can be used for time off to vote.”
New York State Time Off to Vote 2020 Legislation:
New York State Election Law (As amended by Chapter 56 of the Laws of 2020) § 3-110.
Time allowed employees to vote.
- If a registered voter does not have sufficient time outside of his or her scheduled working hours, within which to vote on any day at which he or she may vote, at any election, he or she may, without loss of pay for up to two hours, take off so much working time as will, when added to his or her voting time outside his or her working hours, enable him or her to vote.
- If an employee has four consecutive hours either between the opening of the polls and the beginning of his or her working shift, or between the end of his or her working shift and the closing of the polls, he or she shall be deemed to have sufficient time outside his or her working hours within which to vote. If he or she has less than four consecutive hours he or she may take off so much working time as will, when added to his or her voting time outside his or her working hours enable him or her to vote, but not more than two hours of which shall be without loss of pay, provided that he or she shall be allowed time off for voting only at the beginning or end of his or her working shift, as the employer may designate, unless otherwise mutually agreed.
- If the employee requires working time off to vote the employee shall notify his or her employer not more than ten nor less than two working days before the day of the election that he or she requires time off to vote in accordance with the provisions of this section.
- Not less than ten working days before every election, every employer shall post conspicuously in the place of work where it can be seen as employees come or go to their place of work, a notice setting forth the provisions of this section. Such notice shall be kept posted until the close of the polls on election day.
ATTENTION ALL EMPLOYEES Time allowed employees to vote on election day
N.Y. ELECTION LAW SECTION 3-110i states that:
- IF YOU DO NOT HAVE 4 consecutive hours to vote, either from the opening of the Polls to the beginning of YOUR WORKING shift, or between the end of your working shift and the closing of the polls, YOU MAY TAKE OFF UP TO 2 HOURS, without loss of pay, TO ALLOW YOU TIME TO VOTE if you are a registered voter.
- You may take time off at the beginning or end of your working shift, as your employer may designate, unless otherwise mutually agreed.
- YOU MUST NOTIFY YOUR EMPLOYER Not less than 2 days, but not MORE THAN 10 days, before THE DAY OF THE ELECTION THAT YOU WILL TAKE TIME off to vote.
i Employers: Not less than ten working days before any Election Day, every employer shall post conspicuously in the place of work where it can be seen as employees come or go to their place of work, a notice setting forth the provisions of this law. Such notice shall be kept posted until the close of the polls on Election Day
New York State Employer Posting Link (10 Working Days)
Current State of Pennsylvania Voting Leave Legislation:
- “Time off Allotted: The statute does not provide for any period of leave. It is unlawful for a person to use force, violence, restraint, or to inflict or threaten to inflict injury, damage, harm or loss on a person to induce or compel such person to vote or refrain from voting.”[i]
Here’s a list of jurisdictions that require time off for voting:
- District of Columbia.
- New Mexico.
- New York.
- North Dakota.
- South Dakota.
- West Virginia.
State of Pennsylvania Draft Organizational Policy (this is an example):
“Organization ________believes that it is the responsibility and duty of employees to exercise the privilege of voting in elections. In accordance with this philosophy, the company will grant its employees approved time off to vote if necessary due to work schedules.
Time Off for Voting:
All employees should be able to vote either before or after regularly assigned work hours. However, when this is not possible due to work schedules, managers are authorized to grant a reasonable period of time, up to three hours, during the workday to vote. Time off for voting should be reported and coded appropriately on timekeeping records.”[i][ii]
[ii] Burr Consulting, LLC Article 11.2018