Colorado Political Activity: What you need to know

Under Colorado law, employers must give registered voters up to 2 hours off work without deduction in pay if the employees do not have 3 consecutive nonworking hours outside of working hours when the polls are open (CO Rev. Stat. Sec. 1-7-102).
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Employers may designate the time period to be taken, but if the employee requests, such hours must be at the beginning or end of the work shift.
To be entitled to time off, employees must give their employer written notice of their intention to vote before election day.
Colorado law prohibits employers from:
• Controlling the action of its employees in casting their votes.
• Refusing to allow an employee to take time off to vote as provided by state law.
• Enclosing in employees' pay envelopes political mottoes or arguments containing threats intended to influence the political opinions or actions of employees.
• Within 90 days of an election, exhibiting in the workplace any notice indicating that work will cease or wages will be reduced if a particular ticket or candidate is elected. Violation of this law is a misdemeanor.
If convicted, violators may be subject to a maximum fine of $1,000, a year in jail, or both (CO Rev. Stat. Sec. 1-13-719, Sec. 1-13-111).
In addition, employers are prohibited from forbidding or preventing employees from participating in politics or serving in public office. Violators are subject to a maximum fine of $2,000, a year in jail, or both (CO Rev. Stat. Sec. 8-2-108).
State employees are protected from discrimination on the basis of political affiliation or activity by the Colorado Personnel Board Rules (CO Code Regs. Tit. 4 Sec. 801).
Last reviewed on August 2, 2017.

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