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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Some changes may soon be coming at the Allegheny County Jail when it comes to corrections officers who are ordered to work overtime.
Federal Judge Arthur Schwab has issued a ruling that prohibits the Allegheny County Jail from enforcing sections of its forced overtime policy for corrections officers, which the judge said violates the federal Family Medical Leave Act.
Pittsburgh Attorney Timothy O’Brien says the forced overtime practice is believed to be a widespread throughout the corrections industry.
O’Brien said the jail has assigned corrections officers a large number of overtime shifts. Some of the officers, he said, qualify for family leave due to their own medical conditions.
The bottom line, O’Brien explained, is that some officers are forced to use up their family leave very quickly, which subjects them to discipline and possible termination.
O’Brien said the ruling from Judge Schwab sends out a clear message to all employers that they may not adopt overtime policies that discriminate against anyone on family leave or interfere with their ability to use their leave.
Amie Downs, the director of Allegheny County communications, says the county law department has no comment at this time.