We lost the battle in Connecticut, but...
On Wednesday at midnight, the gavel struck marking the close of the Connecticut Senate Session, and the end of our campaign for the Paid Sick Days bill this year. Despite an unbelievable amount of dedication and hard work, our push for Paid Sick Days came up just one vote short in the State Senate. On the final day of the legislative session, the Paid Sick Days bill stood at 18-18 on the Senate. Without the votes to pass it, Democratic leaders in the Senate did not call the bill for a vote.
We lost this battle, but we know that we're eventually going to win the war for Paid Sick Days for everyone because we plan to be back next session! Together, we advanced the cause of Paid Sick Days within a hare's breath of the finish line -- and next year we'll have an even better shot at going all the way to victory!
As a result of your efforts, we had some major victories this year:
* Many business owners signed on in support of this legislation, showing the strong economic case for Paid Sick Days for everyone;
* The media covered Paid Sick Days more this year than ever before;
* You sent in over 20,000 letters to your legislators supporting this effort;
* We made Paid Sick Days THE issue of the legislative session -- and the number one target for the corporate lobby. They were trembling in their boots!
* The Paid Sick Days bill passed in the House of Representatives -- despite a 9 HOUR debate -- for the first time EVER!
All in all, we have some tremendous things to celebrate. And, while we're deeply disappointed that the Senate wasn't able to pass the Paid Sick Days bill this year (even though they did in the two previous years!), we know that we have their attention. And we know that next year, 2010, is an election year, where politicians will feel even greater pressure to do the right thing.
I'd like to give a big thank you to our super volunteers, Cathy and Bruce, who worked the phones all week to try to sway our swing Senators. I'd also like to thank Connecticut Working Families for their incredible leadership right up to the very end, and their good humor and always creative and innovative tactics. You're an inspiration!
We have a whole summer to rally together and bring this fight to the Connecticut General Assembly next year. And together, we can do it!
Share your thoughts about the campaign at this blog. We'd love to hear from you about your favorite moments in working on Paid Sick Days. Did you get in a great discussion about the issue with a loved one? Did you convince a neighbor? Talk up your legislator in the grocery store? And, now that elections are coming up next year, do you think you'll be supporting candidates who support Paid Sick Days?
Tell us what you think!
Thank you for all you're doing for families in Connecticut. Let's go, fight, and win next year!