January 17, 2018
On December 18, 2017, Governor Cuomo signed legislation that amended Civil Service Law Sections 159-b and 159-c. Currently, those sections entitle most public sector employees to take up to four hours of paid leave per year to be screened for breast cancer (159-b) and up to four hours of paid leave per year to be screened for prostate cancer (159-c), without deducting any leave time (e.g., sick, personal, or vacation) from the employee.
Effective March 18, 2018, Civil Service Law Section 159-b will be amended by broadening the scope of that provision so that it will apply to all cancer screenings. Because Section 159-b will now apply to all types of cancer screenings (including screenings for prostate cancer), Civil Service Law Section 159-c (relating to prostate cancer screenings) will be repealed.
Public employers should review their policies to ensure that employees are permitted to take up to a maximum of four hours of paid leave per year for any type of cancer screening, without deducting any other leave time (e.g., sick, personal, or vacation) from the employee.