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Welcome to the MomsRising blog carnival on paid sick days for New York City! We've partnered with A Better Balance and the New York State Paid Leave Coalition to host a New York-based social media conversation (via this blog carnival and a Twitter party using #paidsickdays) focused on the urgent healthcare and public health issue: the need among New York's families for paid sick days.  The goal is to get the word out about the need for paid sick days--and ultimately to bring this issue to a vote before the NYC Council.  This online action will correspond to New York City's Women's Equality Day on August 26th. We think this could be just the combined public push Speaker Chris Quinn (@ChrisCQuinn on Twitter) needs to call for a vote.

Moms, dads and all family caregivers working in New York City need to be able to earn paid sick days now. Take a look at just one of the hundreds of personal stories sent to MomsRising:

"I am a teacher and am fortunate to have 10 sick days a year. Unfortunately, my husband does not get paid sick leave. If he takes a day off the pay for that day is gone. At times he ends up losing two shifts (he often sleeps on the boat that he works on in another state) and that causes us to feel the financial burden even more. I am a severe asthmatic which often causes me to use most of my sick time on me. If our daughter ends up ill when my days are done we have to see whose pay it is best to do without. This often leads us short on money for rent, groceries, or gas. We are college educated, hard working citizens who should not have to fear being short on cash because of illness."

Why are paid sick days so important for New York City?

We all know how fast the flu can travel through a workplace, school, or child care center; yet nearly one and half million New York City residents are not allowed by their employers to earn paid sick days. That means they often have to choose between going to work sick, and losing a day’s pay (and possibly their jobs) if they stay home sick or with sick kids.

A million and a half workers In New York City are not allowed by their employers to earn a single paid sick day.  And alarmingly, 90 percent of restaurant workers cannot earn paid sick days. [1] This is a big problem – when sick folks aren’t able to stay home, it puts everyone’s health at risk – coworkers, restaurant patrons, school kids, and, well, everyone. Allowing workers with contagious diseases to avoid unnecessary contact with co-workers and customers is a fundamental public health measure. Our laws are clearly out of sync with responsible public health practices.

The paid sick days bill would allow employees in New York City to earn up to five paid sick days per year, based on hours worked, for employees at small businesses (fewer than 20 employees), and nine paid sick days for employees at large firms. The legislation would also bar employers from retaliating against an employee for using the paid leave time.

The city of San Francisco passed a similar law in 2006, and its businesses have not experienced any negative impacts. In fact, San Francisco experienced stronger employment growth in industries most affected by paid leave – retail, hospitality, food service etc – than the neighboring counties without paid sick days. [2]

Everyone gets sick.  When we’re worried about our kids’ health or our own health, we shouldn’t also have to worry if we’ll still have a job when we get better.

Don’t forget to send a tweet or a Facebook wall post to Speaker Chris Quinn to support the NYC paid sick days bill! Dear @ChrisCQuinn, NYC workers & families need 2 earn #paidsickdays now! PSD resources:

Thank you!  And thank you for checking out today's blog carnival!

[1] Restaurant Opportunities Center United and Restaurant Opportunities Center – New York, Burned: High Risks and Low Benefits for Workers in the New York City Restaurant Industry, September 11, 2009

[2] Drum Major Institute for Public Policy, Paid Sick Leave Does Not Harm Employment, March 2010


A Paid Sick Days Wake Up Call, Nancy Rankin

Why Should You Care About Mandatory Paid Sick Leave?, Amy Impellizzeri

Why We Need Paid Sick Days: Stories From NY Parents, Ruth Martin

Working to Improve the Workplace so Workers Can Care for Their Families, Sherry Leiwant

Latest News and Plans for the NYC Paid Sick Days Campaign, Donna Dolan

NYC Paid Sick Leave Rally Draws Crowds, Opposition and Gloria Steinem, Amy Impellizzeri

Imagining a World With Paid Sick Days, Linda Meric

No Reason to Wait on Paid Sick Leave, John Petro

Be Careful Not To Sit On The Fence With Paid Sick Days, Tim Judson

Campaign for Paid Sick Time in New York City Marches On, Amy Impellizzeri

Most Americans Support Paid Sick Leave, Poll Finds, Steven Greenhouse, New York Times

The Benefits of Paid Sick Days Are Understated, Robert Drago

Working Horses Get Paid Sick Days. 50 Million Working Americans Don't, SEIU, Kate Thomas

Paid Sick Leave Draws Closer for City Workers, New York Times, Jennifer Lee

Paid Sick Days for New York City, A Better Balance

Calling All Detectives..., AdHocMoms, Tonya Vernooy

New York City Council Considers Paid Sick Leave Bill, Gangemi Law Firm, P.C.

Paid Sick Leave: A Healthy Business Climate for NYC, Huffington Post, John Petro

Paid Sick Days Stories "Incredibly Compelling," MomsRising blog, Sen. Tom Harkin

Paid Leave Makes Horse Sense, Huffington Post, Jodie Levin-Epstein

It's Time to Flip the Script- Changing the Debate through the States, MomsRising blog, Tim Judson

New Report Shows Paid Sick Leave Saves Businesses Money, CT News, Jonathan Kantrowitz

Time Off For Horses But Not For Humans?, CT Working Families, Jon Green

What Were They Thinking? Single Mom Fired For Caring For Sick Child, HR Morning, Jim Giuliano

Mandated Paid Sick Days Appeal to Dems, Republicans Alike, HR Morning, Kerry Isberg

How to Cut Business Costs By Adding Benefits, Economic Opportunity Institute

Calling in Sick: Americans Out Of Luck, MomsRising blog, Rep. Linda T. Sánchez

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