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Executive orders require federal contractors to adjust some of their employee policies and practices regarding federal contract workers minimum wage, sick leave, and pay transparency. Here’s the shortlist on what you need to know about how these changes may or may not affect your federal contract work.

 EO 13658 affects 200,000 workers

Federal Contractor Minimum Wage Increase: Executive Order 13658

Signed by President Obama in 2014, Executive Order 13658 established a minimum wage of $10.10 per hour for all workers working on or in connection with certain federal contracts. Beginning January 1, 2016, contractors are required to pay their employees $10.15 per hour. If they have tipped employees, they must be paid $5.85 per hour. All contractors must notify workers, whether they work on- or off-site. This rate increase does not affect federally assisted contracts.

Covered contracts under EO 13658 include:

  • Procurement contracts for construction covered by the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA)
  • Contracts for services covered by the Service Contract Act (SCA)
  • Concessions contracts (grants a right to use Federal property, including land or facilities, for furnishing services)
  • Contracts in connection with Federal property or lands and related to offering services for Federal employees, their dependents, or the general public.
 Paid sick leave could affect 300,000 workers

Federal Contractors Must Provide Paid Sick Leave

In September 2015, President Obama signed an Executive Order requiring federal contractors to offer up to seven paid sick days per year. Both full and part-time workers will accrue an hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Employees can use this guaranteed time off to take care of themselves, a sick family member, or domestic partner. The order also stipulates leave can be used to recover from domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking incidents. The sick leave can be carried over from year to year. The regulations apply to new contracts after January 1, 2017.

The order applies to federal contracts if:

  • Procurement contracts for construction covered by the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA)
  • Contracts for services covered by the Service Contract Act (SCA)
  • Concessions contracts (grants a right to use Federal property, including land or facilities, for furnishing services)
  • Contracts in connection with Federal property or lands and related to offering services for Federal employees, their dependents, or the general public.

Non-Retaliation for Disclosure of Compensation Information: Executive Order 13665

In 2014, President Obama signed the executive order “Non-Retaliation for Disclosure of Compensation Information,” giving workers of federal contractors (including applicants) protection to discuss their paychecks without fear of being fired (or other adverse action) or discrimination. The order adds to an effort to identify and correct compensation discrimination by increasing employees’ ability to openly ask about, discuss, or disclose information about their compensation with colleagues.

Tip: Make an effort now to evaluate compensation practices and transparency, and make changes now before they could become an issue later.