Board Converting News, April 20, 2020

BoardConverting Serving the North American Corrugated and Folding Carton Industries for 36 years April 20, 2020 VOL. 36, NO. 16

My Employee Is Requesting Leave Due To COVID-19: Now What? BY JOEL GREENWALD, ESQ. NOTE: The laws are changing rapidly in the current pandemic/crisis. Therefore, the legal issues discussed here are subject to constant change. It is best to consult with counsel concerning any specific legal advice you may need. About three weeks ago, the federal government enacted the Fam- ilies First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which provides job-pro-

Sonoco To Invest $83M In North American URB Mills Hartsville, South Carolina based Sonoco an- nounced that its Board of Directors has ap- proved an $83 million investment to strength- en its uncoated recycled paperboard (URB) mill system in the United States and Canada. The majority of the investment includes trans- forming its Hartsville, SC, corrugated medium machine (No. 10 machine) into a state-of-the- art URB machine with annual production ca- pacity of approximately 180,000 tons. The new Hartsville machine will be de- signed with the goal of being the largest and lowest cost URB machine in the world, with the capability of producing a wide range of high-value paper grades to service Sonoco’s industrial and consumer converted products businesses and external trade customers. Sonoco is one of the world’s leading pro- ducers of URB, with 12 mills and 20 machines in the U.S. and Canada. As a result of the Hartsville No. 10 machine conversion, Sonoco will be exiting the corrugated medium market by the end of 2021, and the expected effi- ciency of the converted machine will give the company the opportunity to rationalize some of the higher cost assets in its mill system.

tected paid leave to employees affected by COVID-19. The law is now in effect and the United States Department of Labor issued a temporary rule on April 1 that clarifies a num- ber of unanswered questions about the law. Below please find responses to Frequently Asked Questions that address business lead- ers’ concerns about how to deal with the com- plex web of COVID-19-related leave issues. Please note that business situations vary and

Joel Greenwald

the answers for your situation are often fact-specific. We hope the fol- lowing FAQs address questions that are relevant and pressing to your business, but they are only general legal information. Q: What’s the FFRCA? A: As a quick reminder, the Act provides a job-protected, paid leave of absence for the employee’s own COVID-19 condition (based on medi- cal recommendations or an order of quarantine), care of someone who has or is suspected to have COVID-19; or care of a child whose school or childcare provider has closed as a result of COVID-19. More informa- tion about the leave entitlements can be found at . Q: My business was ordered to close by the government because we are a non-essential business. Does that mean all my employees get to take a leave of absence under the federal law? A: No. The inquiry needs to focus on whether the employee him- or herself would be able to work “but for” a COVID-19-related reason. In other words, the employee must be otherwise not just able to work or telework, but must be actually working. Where the government re- quires a business to shut down, if the employee is not able to work (say, because the job requires an in-person presence), the employee’s inability to work is caused by the business being closed, not the em- ployee’s own COVID-19-related situation.


WHAT’S INSIDE 6 Corrugated Industry Recognizes 422 For Safety Achievements 8 FBA: Shipments Up Again In March 14 AICC Chairman Jay Carman: ‘You Don’t Feel Alone With AICC’ 32 SCT Develops, Donates Disposable Face Shields


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