Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed a new law allowing workers to take unpaid leave in order to donate bone marrow or to serve as an organ donor, effective July 1, 2016.
The Wisconsin Bone Marrow and Organ Donation Leave Act requires employers with 50 or more workers to take up to six weeks of unpaid leave each year. The Act also restricts local governments from enacting their own bone marrow or organ leave from employment laws.
To qualify, employers must have worked 52 consecutive weeks and put in at least 1,000 hours for the same employer. The worker must provide the employer with written verification from an accredited medical professional that the leave for the requested period is necessary for recovery.
Wisconsin Bone Marrow and Organ Donation Leave Act Posting Requirements
Section 103.11, Wisconsin Statutes, requires all employers with 50 or more employees to display a copy of the Wisconsin Bone Marrow and Organ Donation Leave Act notice in the workplace. The notice should be in the traditional “conspicuous location” where other workplace notices are displayed and accessible by workers.
Although the Act does not stipulate a language requirement, the State did release the notice in English and in Spanish.
Additionally, employers with 25 or more employees are required to post their particular leave policies for bone marrow or organ donation in one or more conspicuous places where notices to employees are customarily posted.
GovDocs will monitor other jurisdictions in the U.S. to see if the Wisconsin Act will serve as a template for other states or local agencies. This type of legislation has a certain benevolent appeal that politicians may find difficult to resist.