Paid sick days are good for children's health
Far too often, parents are forced to choose between a day's pay and caring for sick kids. An incredible 94 million Americans do not have a single paid sick day to use to care for a sick child. Low income parents are even less likely to have access to sick days. Did you know?
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- • Parents with paid sick days are able to care for their kids when they're sick. Working parents with paid sick time or paid vacation days are five times more likely to stay home to care for their sick children than those without paid time off (1).
- • Paid sick days can prevent child illness. With paid sick days, parents are able to take their children to well-child visits and for immunizations, which may prevent serious illnesses (2).
- • Kids need to stay home when they're sick. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend keeping children home from school for 24 hours after their fevers have subsided to prevent the spread of illnesses like the flu (3). Without paid sick days, millions of Americans do not have the luxury of following this recommendation.
- • Kids benefit from parental care when they're sick.Studies show that children recover faster when cared for by their parents. The mere presence of parents shortens a child’s hospital stay by 31% , reducing health care costs (4). Active parental involvement in children’s hospital care may head off future health care needs, partly due to increased parental education and awareness (5).
1,4: Jody Heymann, Forgotten Families: Ending the Growing Crisis Confronting Children and Working Parents in the Global Economy, 2006.
2: Vicky Lovell, No Time to be Sick
3:Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, The Flu
5: Jody Heymann, The Widening Gap: Why America’s Working Families Are in Jeopardy—and What Can Be Done About It, Basic Books, 2000.