Massachusetts Paid Sick DaysMomsRising members made a lot of progress working to bring paid sick days to Massachusetts. Now, we've hit a legislative speed bump and need to push the House leadership to make the paid sick days bill a legislative priority. Read on about what's going on in Massachusetts:
Here's the scoop:
- • Right now nearly half of all Massachusetts workers, and over 85% of people who work in restaurants don't have a single paid sick day.
• The CDC, a governmental agency, cites staying home from work or school as one of three top ways to prevent the spread of the H1N1 virus. Massachusetts legislators need to get to work to ensure that the public can follow the advice of medical professionals--by ensuring that the public has access to paid sick days to care for themselves and thier loved ones when illness strikes.
- • Massachusetts' Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Judy Ann Bigby, noted that a lack of paid sick days often leads to an increase in costly emergency room visits, as people are less likely to benefit from preventative health care if they are without paid sick days.
• Concurrently, the Massachusetts Division of Health Care Finance and Policy estimates that an incredible 47% of emergency room visits in the state of Massachusetts could be prevented by improving access to primary care. Guaranteeing the right of paid sick days for all workers would be a positive step towards increasing widespread access to preventative health care.
MomsRising.org Members in Massachusetts know how important paid sick days are in order to promote public health and economic stability. Since February 2007, we have sent thousands of letters to state legislators. Members also implemented the creative “Apple Gram” outreach, which delivered apples adorned with messages about the Paid Sick Days Bill to legislators. The Paid Sick Days Bill has also benefited from a public hearing and numerous discussions with both advocates and members of the business community.
About the Paid Sick Days Act:
The Paid Sick Days Act would ensure all Massachusetts workers the ability to earn 7 days of paid time off annually to take care of their own illness or that of an immediate family member. The Paid Sick Days Act will ensure that all workers have time to address crucial personal and family health needs.