UW - WSNA Contract
Article 13 - Leaves of Absence
13.1 Leave Procedure.
All leaves as delineated in Sections 2 through 16 below are to be requested from the Employer in writing as far in advance as possible, stating all pertinent details and the amount of time requested. A written reply to grant or deny the request shall be given by Human Resources within thirty days except as otherwise provided in 13.2.
13.2 Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993.
- Benefits provided through state laws and this contract shall not be diminished or withheld in complying with the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993.
An eligible employee is an employee who has worked for the state for at least 12 months and for at least 1,250 hours during the previous 12-month period. Pursuant to the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, during a rolling 12-month period, a total of 12 work weeks of absence shall be granted to an eligible employee:
- As a result of the employee's serious health condition;
- To care for an employee's parent, spouse, domestic partner (same sex or opposite sex) or child who has a serious health condition; and or
- To provide care to an employee's newborn, adopted or foster child.
- As required by federal law, employees are entitled to up to twelve (12) weeks of leave because of any qualifying exigency arising out of the fact that the spouse, son, or daughter or parent is on active duty in the Armed Forces in support of a contingency operation.
- Military Family Leave/ Caregiver. As required by federal law, an RN who is the spouse, son, daughter, parent or next of kin (nearest blood relative) of a covered service member who is recovering from a serious illness or injury sustained in the line of duty while on active duty is entitled to twenty-six (26) weeks of leave in a single 12-month period to care for the service member, including all other types of FMLA leave
- The institution will designate absences that meet the criteria of the Family and Medical Leave Act. Paid or unpaid leave, excluding compensatory time, which is used for that designated absence, shall be counted towards the 12 weeks of the Family and Medical Leave Act entitlement.
- The employee shall use appropriate accrued paid leave (for example, sick, compensatory time, shared leave, personal holiday, vacation) before leave without pay for absence is granted in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act. An employee may choose to retain up to eighty (80) hours of vacation while on leave.
- Employee absence granted for (2) (a) and (b) of this section shall be granted on an intermittent or reduced schedule at the employee's request when medically necessary.
- Following absence granted for the situations in (2) of this section, the employee shall return to the same or equivalent position held prior to the absence.
- The employer shall continue an eligible employee's existing employer-paid health insurance benefits during the leave granted in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act.
- Each institution of higher education and related board shall develop and disseminate a policy specifying the procedures, required information, and time frames for employees to request and use leave in accordance with the state laws, these rules, and the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 law and regulations found in Title 29, Part 825 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
13.3 Disability Leave.
- Disability leave shall be granted for a reasonable period to a permanent employee who is precluded from performing his/her job duties because of a disability (including those related to pregnancy or childbirth). Disability leave includes a serious health condition of the employee as provided in the federal Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. (FMLA) Leave for disability due to pregnancy or childbirth is in addition to twelve (12) weeks under either the FMLA and/ or the Washington State Family Leave Act (RCW 49.78).
- In any case in which the necessity for leave is foreseeable based on planned medical treatment, the employee shall provide not less than thirty days' notice, except that if the treatment requires leave to begin in less than thirty days, the employee shall provide such notice as is practicable.
- The disability and recovery period shall be as defined and certified by the employee's licensed health care provider. The employee shall provide, in a timely manner, a copy of such certification to the employer.
Certification provided under this section shall be sufficient if it states:
- The date on which the condition commenced;
- The probable duration of the condition;
- The appropriate medical facts within the knowledge of the health care provider regarding the condition;
- A statement that the employee is unable to perform the essential functions of his/her position.
- The employer may require, at its expense, that the employee obtain the opinion of a second health care provider designated or approved by the employer. The health care provider shall not be employed on a regular basis by the employer.
- In any case in which the second opinion differs from the original certification, the employer may require, at its expense that the employee obtain the opinion of a third health care provider designated or approved jointly by the employer and the employee. The opinion of the third health care provider shall be final and binding.
- The employer may require that the employee obtain subsequent re-certifications on a reasonable basis.
- Disability leave may be a combination of sick leave, vacation leave, personal holiday, compensatory time, and leave of absence without pay and shall be granted at the written request of the employee. The combination and use of paid and unpaid leave during a disability leave shall be per the choice of the employee.
- The institution shall maintain health care coverage during disability leave granted here, in accordance with the requirements of the Public Employee's Benefits Board (PEBB) and FMLA. As specified in the FMLA, the institution may recover the premium for maintaining coverage during the period of unpaid disability leave if the employee does not return to work.
- If necessary due to continued disability, the employee shall be allowed to use eight hours of accrued paid leave per month for the duration of the leave, including the twelve workweeks provided in section 13.16 of this Agreement, to provide for continuation of benefits as provided by the PEBB. The employer shall designate on which day of each month the eight hours paid leave will be used.
13.4 Parental Leave.
A RN is entitled to a total of twelve workweeks for disability leave, parental leave, and family medical leave-serious health condition during any twelve-month period.
Parental leave shall be granted to a permanent employee because of the birth of a child of the employee and in order to provide care, or because of the placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care.
- Parental leave shall not total more than four months, including the twelve workweeks provided under the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA), unless the Manager grants additional time.
- Parental leave beyond the period covered by FMLA may only be denied by the Medical Center due to operational necessity.
- Parental leave must be taken during the first year following the child's birth or placement of the child with the employee for adoption or foster care.
- The RN shall submit a written request for parental leave to the Manager and must receive written approval from Human Resources.
- The RN shall provide not less than thirty days' notice, except that if the child's birth or placement requires leave to begin in less than thirty days, the employee shall provide notice as is practicable.
- Within ten working days of the receipt of the request, the institution shall provide the RN with a written response and, if the leave is denied, rationale supporting the operational necessity and the notice of the RN's right to grieve the denial.
- Parental leave may be a combination of vacation leave, personal holiday, compensatory time, and leave of absence without pay. The RN will use accrued paid leave prior to going on leave without pay. RN's will be able to retain enough hours in their accrued balances to provide for continuation of benefits for the duration of their leave.
- The institution shall maintain health care coverage during parental leave in accordance with the requirements of the Public Employees' Benefits Board and FMLA. As specified in the FMLA, the institution may recover the premium for maintaining coverage during the period of unpaid parental leave if the employee does not return to work.
- If necessary due to continued approved parental leave, the employee shall be allowed to use eight hours per month of the accrued paid leave identified in subsection (3) of this section for up to four months, including the twelve workweeks provided in section 13.16 during a parental leave of absence without pay to provide for continuation of benefits as provided by the Public Employees' Benefits Board. The employer shall designate on which day of each month the eight hours paid leave will be used.
13.5 Military Leave With Pay.
- Employees shall be entitled to military leave with pay not to exceed twenty-one (21) working days during each year, beginning October 1st and ending the following September 30th, in order to report for active duty, when called, or to take part in active training duty in such manner and at such time as they may be ordered to active duty or active training duty in the Washington National Guard or of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, or Marine Corps reserve of the United States or of any organized reserve or armed forces of the United States.
- Such leave shall be in addition to any vacation and sick leave to which an employee is entitled and shall not result in any reduction of benefits, performance ratings, privileges or pay.
- During military leave with pay, the RN shall receive the RN's regular rate of pay.
- Employees required to appear during working hours for a physical examination to determine physical fitness for military service shall receive full pay for the time required to complete the examination.
13.5.1 Military Leave Without Pay.
A Registered Nurse shall be entitled to military leave of absence without pay for service in the uniformed services of the United States or the state, and to reinstatement as provided in chapter 73.16 RCW. No adjustments shall be made to the seniority date, leave accrual rate, periodic increment date and anniversary date while an employee is on military leave.
13.6 Military Spouse Leave.
Pursuant to state law, up to fifteen (15) business days of leave will be granted to a RN whose spouse is on leave from deployment or before and up to deployment during a period of military conflict. A RN who takes leave under this section may elect to substitute any accrued leave to which s/he is entitled. RNs must provide notice to UWMC within five (5) business days of receiving notice of call or order to active duty or notice that the RN's spouse will be on leave from deployment.
13.7 Educational Leave.
After six months of continuous employment, permission may be granted for leave of absence without pay for up to one year of study, without loss of accrued benefits.
A nurse shall not incur any reduction in pay when participating in an educational program at the request of the Employer.
13.8 Leave of Absence Without Pay.
Leave of absence without pay may be allowed for any of the following reasons:
- Conditions applicable for leave with pay;
- Disability leave;
- Educational leave;
- Leave for government service in the public interest;
- Parental leave;
- Child care emergencies;
- To accommodate annual work schedules of employees occupying cyclic year positions;
- Serious health condition of an eligible employee's child, spouse, domestic partner (same sex or opposite sex) or parent.
- Requests for leave of absence without pay must be submitted in writing to the Medical Center and must receive the approval of both the employing official and the personnel officer.
- Leave of absence without pay extends from the time an employee's leave commences until he/she is scheduled to return to continuous service, unless at the employee's request the employing official and the personnel officer agree to an earlier date.
- Vacation leave and sick leave credits will not accrue during a leave of absence without pay which exceeds ten working days in any calendar month.
13.9 Leave of Absence-Duration.
Leave of absence without pay shall not exceed twelve months except for educational leave, which may be allowed for the duration of actual attendance, and leave for government service in the public interest. Leave of absence without pay may be extended for an additional twelve months upon signed request of the employee and signed approval of the Nurse Manager or designee and Human Resources.
13.10 Civil Duty Leave.
Leave of absence with pay shall be granted employees to serve on jury duty, as trial witnesses, or to exercise other subpoenaed civil duties. Employees shall reimburse the institution for all compensation received for such civil duty, exclusive of expenses incurred.
The Nurse Manager or designee will consider the impact of jury duty on scheduling assignments of RNs on civil duty leave. If a nurse serves five consecutive days of jury service (beginning Monday and ending Friday), then the nurse should not be required to work the following weekend and may substitute benefit time for weekend hours scheduled.
13.11 Anniversary Date.
The most recent date of hire into state service.
13.12 Periodic Increment Date.
The date upon which a RN is scheduled to move to a higher salary step within their range and vacation accrual level.
Leave with pay shall not alter a nurse's compensation or status with the Employer.
Leave without pay for a period of ten working days or less shall not alter a nurse's periodic increment date or the amount of vacation pay or sick leave credits that would otherwise be earned by him/her.
When a leave of absence without pay exceeds ten working days in any calendar month, or exceeds ten consecutive working days, the periodic increment date will be extended by one month except where the leave of absence is the result of work-related injury or military service.
13.13 Leave of Absence - Employee Rights.
Employees returning from an authorized leave of absence within 6 months shall be employed in the same position or in another position in the same class in the same geographical area and organizational unit, providing that such reemployment is not in conflict with rules relating to reduction in force.
13.14 Leave Due to Child Care Emergencies.
Absence due to child care emergencies as defined shall be charged to one of the following:
- Compensatory time;
- Vacation leave;
- Sick leave;
- Personal holiday;
- Leave of absence without pay.
- Use of any of the above leave categories is dependent upon the employee's eligibility to use such leave. Accrued compensatory time shall be used before any other leave is used.
- Use of vacation leave, sick leave, and leave of absence without pay for emergency child care is limited to six (6) days total per calendar year.
- The employee upon returning from such leave shall designate in writing to which leave category the absence will be charged. For the purpose of this section, advance approval or written advance notice of vacation leave, personal holiday and/or leave of absence without pay shall not be required.
Child care emergency is defined as a situation causing an employee's inability to report for or continue scheduled work because of emergency child care requirements ("child" as identified in section 14.2, below), such as unexpected absence of regular care provider, unexpected closure of child's school, or unexpected need to pick up child at school earlier than normal.
13.15 Extended Leaves.
In addition to other approved leave programs; there shall be an extended leave program at University of Washington Medical Center. The program shall provide for three to five registered nurses to be eligible for a leave of absence not to exceed six months following completion of four years of unbroken service as an RN at UWMC. Participants in the program shall use vacation, holiday or compensatory leave as a portion of the requested leave.
The Conference Committee shall participate in the development of criteria by which the program will be administered and evaluated for possible continuation.
13.16 Suspended Operation.
If the Chief Executive Officer of the institution determines that the public health or property or safety is jeopardized and it is advisable due to emergency conditions to suspend the operation of all or any portion of the institution, the following will govern classified employees:
When prior notification has not been given, employees released until further notice after reporting to work, shall receive a minimum of four hours pay for the first day. The following options shall be made available to affected employees not required to work for the balance of the closure:
- Vacation leave, personal holiday; or
- Accrued compensatory time (where applicable); or
- Leave without pay; or
- Reasonable opportunity to make up work time lost as a result of the suspended operation as provided in subsection (1)(c).
- Employees required to work shall receive their regular rate of pay for work performed during the period of suspended operation. Overtime worked during the closure will be compensated. UWMC may offer hazard pay.
- Employees who lose regular work time as a result of suspended operation may request to work additional hours during the ninety-day period immediately following the suspended operation. Compensation for such additional work shall be granted on a compensatory time basis at not less than straight time nor more than time and one-half, and shall be part of the institution's suspended operations procedures. The amount of compensation earned under this section should not exceed the amount of salary lost by the employee due to suspended operation.
- Each institution/related board, together with the appropriate exclusive representative(s)shall develop and file with the director, subject to approval, a procedure to provide for staffing during periods of suspended operation. The procedure shall include identification of the manner in which employees will be notified of suspended operation by the Chief Executive Officer.
- The provisions of this rule may be utilized only when an institutional procedure has been approved by the director and an official declaration of suspended operation has been made by the Chief Executive Officer of the institution.
- The provisions of this section and institutional procedures adopted hereunder may not be in effect in excess of fifteen calendar days unless within the fifteen days the personnel officer requests the director's or designee's approval of an extension. Such approval is subject to confirmation by the board.
13.17 Association Leave.
Employees who intend to absent themselves from work for the purpose of attending and participating in Association business functions or programs such as meetings, conventions, seminars, or in other meetings called by the Association may do so under the following conditions:
- Use accrued vacation leave;
- Take voluntary leave of absence without pay;
- Use accrued holiday compensatory or personal holiday time;
- Use accrued compensatory time.
The Association and/or the employee shall request approval from the affected employee's immediate supervisor at least two weeks prior to the planned absence for approval.
13.18 Domestic Violence Leave.
Pursuant to RCW 49.78, if a RN or family member is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking, the RN may take reasonable leave from work, intermittent leave or leave on a reduced leave schedule to take care of legal or law enforcement needs to ensure the RN's or family member's health and safety. In addition, leave may be taken by the RN to seek medical treatment, mental health counseling and social services assistance for the RN or the RN's family member.
For purposes of this section, "family member" includes a nurse's child, spouse, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, domestic partner or a person who the nurse is dating. The RN must provide advance notice of the need for such leave, whenever possible and may be required to provide verification of need and familial relationship (e.g. a birth certificate, police report).
A RN may elect to use any combination of her/his accrued leave or unpaid leave. UWMC shall maintain health insurance coverage for the duration of the leave.
The Employer shall maintain the confidentiality of all information provided by the RN including the fact that the RN is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking, and that the RN has requested leave.
13.19 Leave Without Pay for Reason of Faith or Conscience.
In accordance with RCW 1.16.050, employees will have the option to take up to two unpaid holidays per calendar year for a reason of faith or conscience, or for an organized activity conducted under the auspices of a religious denomination, church, or religious organization.
To take unpaid time off under the statute, employees must consult with their supervisor or administrator and use their unit's procedure for making advance leave requests. The employee will need to inform their unit that the requested unpaid day(s) is for a reason of faith or conscience or for an organized activity conducted under the auspices of a religious denomination, church, or religious organization.
The employer can only deny an employee's requested day(s) off if the employer determines that the requested time off would impose an undue hardship on the employer, or the employee's presence is necessary to maintain public safety. Undue hardship is defined in Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 82-56-020. Employees may be asked to provide verification for their unpaid leave request.
Requests to use unpaid personal holiday leave will follow normal departmental leave request processes.