It’s official. The coronavirus has reached New York, with six confirmed cases in the state so far.
Now the need for guaranteed paid sick days in our state is more urgent than ever! Workers without paid sick days are 150% more likely to go to work when they have the flu or a viral infection, so it’s no surprise that states and cities that have passed paid sick time legislation have seen their flu rates decrease by up to 40%!
(Governor Cuomo’s paid sick days proposal would establish five paid sick days for employees at small businesses and seven paid sick days for employees at larger companies.)
Experts are urging New York state residents to stay home if they’re sick in order to curb the spread of the virus, but what about the 1.3 millions people across the state that work but don’t have any paid sick days? Staying home instead of going to work when they’re sick isn’t a straightforward choice for them because it means losing critical pay that they need to cover rent, groceries, and heat – or even losing their job altogether, as nearly 1 in 5 low-income moms have previously been fired for this very reason.
It’s this simple: paid sick days will help limit the spread of the coronavirus in New York, but over one million workers in our state – many of them in the food service industry – don’t have access to any!
Together, we’re a powerful force for women and families in NY who need paid sick days!