Paid Sick Days
Everyone gets sick. But not everyone gets paid sick days. In fact, millions of hardworking Americans lack access to any form of paid leave.
Those hit the hardest are women, low-wage workers, those in part-time or temp jobs, and those in the service, retail and hospitality industries. In other words, those who can least afford it, are the least likely to get a single paid day off if they or someone in their family gets sick.
In these tough economic times, no one should have to lose income — or worse, lose their job — just because they or their family members get sick.
I worked for an employer who didn’t provide earned sick leave. I was forced to go to work sick. Since I wasn’t able to stay at home and recuperate it took me a lot longer to get well. Unfortunately, my younger children would then get sick and my older daughters had to stay home from school so I could go to work. I couldn’t afford not to get paid. Not only did this affect my daughters’ school attendance, but it put me in a position that no responsible parent wants to ever be in.
Know the Facts
- Paid sick days help working families make ends meet.
Just three days of wages lost to an illness are equivalent to the entire monthly grocery or health care budget of the average American family.
- Paid sick days promote a healthy workforce and strong economy.
Nearly 80 percent of food service and hotel workers don’t have a single paid sick day. The Centers for Disease Control found that more than ten million cases of food borne illness each year are caused by sick restaurant workers contaminating food while they work.
- Paid sick days are good for businesses.
If workers earned seven paid sick days a year, our national economy would experience a net savings of $160,000 billion a year due to increased productivity and reduced turnover.
What You Can Do
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