Bill Gives Illinois Workers Time Off for Blood Donation

July 29, 2005 ( - A new Illinois state law mandates that employers in the state give workers an hour of paid leave every 56 days so the person can donate blood.

Workers first have to get their manager’s approval in the measure that applies to companies with more than 50 workers and to full-time employees with at least six months of service. The state’s Employee Blood Donation Leave Act takes effect January 1, 2006.

The Illinois legislature directed the state Department of Labor to promulgate regulations for the administration of the law, including rules establishing how an employee is to request leave, conditions under which the leave must be approved, and what medical documentation an employer may require before or after the donation leave.

The new Act was passed concurrently with minor changes to the existing Illinois Organ Donor Leave Act (2003), which provides employees of the state or state agencies of any size with up to 30 days of paid leave in any 12-month period to serve as a bone marrow or organ donor, or up to two hours paid leave to donate blood platelets (to a maximum of 24 times in a 12-month period, or approximately every two weeks). 

The blood donation bill is  here .