|BILL AS INTRODUCED||2007-2008|
Introduced by: Representative Obuchowski of Rockingham
Subject: Labor; conditions of employment; employment breaks
Statement of purpose: This bill proposes to require that employers provide work breaks for their employees.
AN ACT RELATING TO EMPLOYMENT BREAKS
It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:
Sec. 1. 21 V.S.A. § 305 is added to read:
§ 305. EMPLOYMENT BREAK; REQUIRED
(a) An employer shall provide each employee with at least a 30-minute break, paid or unpaid, in which the employee may eat, rest, or use the toilet facilities, during any period of six or more consecutive hours of work. For the purposes of this section, a “break” means time without any employment responsibilities. An employer may adopt a break policy that is more generous than the one required under this section.
(b) An employer shall not retaliate or discriminate in any way against an employee for complaining to the employer or for filing a complaint with the commissioner alleging a violation of this section.
(c) An employee who is denied an employment break as required by this section may recover civil damages in the amount of three times the employee’s hourly wage multiplied by the number of hours of break time that the employee has been denied.
(d) An employee aggrieved by a violation of this section may bring a civil action for equitable relief and other appropriate relief, including reinstatement, lost wages, damages, costs, and reasonable attorney fees.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street