Businesses now prohibited from firing employees who miss work due to infectious disease

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Urban News Staff Reports

New legislation prohibits an employers from terminating or refusing to reinstate an employee who has, or is likely to have, an infectious disease which requires the employee to miss time at work. 

Under the bill, an employee who requests or takes time off from work, based on the recommendation of a medical professional, may not be terminated or refused reinstatement if the employee is likely to infect others in the workplace.

"Our message in New Jersey has been loud and clear: if you're sick, stay home," said Murphy. “No one should fear retribution from their employer for an absence deemed necessary by a medical professional, particularly for an illness as communicable as COVID-19. Every New Jerseyan has a role to play in our mitigation efforts and staying away from others when you’re sick is perhaps the most important thing you can do right now.”

Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg said nobody should have to choose between their job and their health.

“We are calling for strict observance of social distancing and asking people to stay home if they have any signs of illness but we can’t ask that of them unless we also ensure they will have a job to go back to after this crisis passes," she said. "I’m heartened to see the Governor take such immediate action on such a crucial aspect of these public health measures necessary to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.”

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