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Paid COVID-19 Leave

Governor Pritzker signed HB 1167 into law on April 5, 2022. The new legislation, Public Act 102-0697, requires schools and colleges to provide paid leave to their vaccinated employees for reasons related to COVID-19 during a public health emergency. HB 1167 defines “fully vaccinated” as 2-weeks after receiving the second dose in a 2-dose series of a COVID-19 vaccine (i.e., Moderna or Pfizer) or a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine (i.e., Johnson & Johnson). The definition of “fully vaccinated” will include recommended booster doses for which the individual is eligible only upon adoption by IDPH of any changes made by the CDC to the definition of “full vaccinated against COVID-19” to include booster doses. The law also requires school districts and colleges to return sick leave that was used for qualifying COVID-19 reasons during the 2021-2022 school/academic year.

COVID Qualifying Reasons

  • Employee is restricted from being on school district/community college property for a COVID-19 reason.
  • Care for a child who is unable to attend their elementary or secondary school because the child is a confirmed COVID-19 case, a probable COVID-19 case, a close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case or been required by school district/community college policy to be excluded due to COVID-19 symptoms.

The new paid leave and the returned sick leave are available only to employees who receive all of the COVID-19 vaccine doses required to be “fully vaccinated” no later than May 10, 2022. Highland voluntarily provided paid leave to employees for COVID quarantine, symptoms or awaiting test results under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) through September 30, 2021. Based on our records, HR will be returning paid sick leave to eligible employees for COVID related absences from the time period of October 1, 2021 to present, or providing paid leave if they weren’t eligible for sick leave. Impacted employees will be notified. If you are not notified and believe that you are eligible, please contact HR. HR did not track instances of when an employee was not able work in order to care for a child who was unable to attend their elementary or secondary school for the reasons noted above.