Upon request of an employee who is a volunteer firefighter of a rural fire protection district or a firefighter employed by a city or a private firefighting service to perform service pursuant to ORS 476.510 (Short title) to 476.610 (Payment of claims), the employee, upon written notice by the employer, may be granted a leave of absence by the employer until release from such service permits the employee to resume the duties of employment.
The regular employment position of an employee on leave of absence under this section shall be considered vacant only for the period of the leave of absence. The employee shall not be subject to removal or discharge from such position as a consequence of the leave of absence.
Upon the termination of a leave of absence under this section, the employee shall be restored to the employee’s position or an equivalent position by the employer without loss of seniority, vacation credits, sick leave credits, service credits under a pension plan or any other employee benefit or right that had been earned at the time of the leave of absence.
An employer is not required to pay wages or other monetary compensation to an employee during a leave of absence under subsection (1) of this section.
As used in this section:
“Employee” means any individual, other than a copartner of the employer or an independent contractor, who renders personal services in this state to an employer who pays or agrees to pay wages or other compensation to the individual for those services.