CAG Action Alert

Families Need Earned Sick Days, Ask Sen Manchin to co-sponsor!

Citizen Action Group Action Alert
Jun 12, 2015 View / Comment Online Donate
Recently Sen. Manchin voted for an amendment in support of Earned Sick Leave. West Virginia Citizen Action and our national affiliate USAction think it’s times to ask him to take the next step…earned sick daysAsk Sen. Manchin to cosponsor the Healthy Families Act, (S 497) legislation that would allow workers to earn paid sick leave to use when they are sick, to care for a sick family member, to obtain preventive care, or to address the impacts of domestic violence.Click to sign the petition – we’ll deliver in person next week: full forty percent of private-sector American workers have no access to paid sick days— meaning that they cannot miss a day of work without risking a day’s pay or even their job. When illness or emergency strikes, millions of hardworking people must make an impossible choice between the job they need and their or their families’ health and well-being, Under the Healthy Families Act, workers would have the security of knowing that they will be able to tend to their families and themselves without losing their jobs or their income.Paid sick days are also a matter of public health – seventy percent of low-wage workers—including food service, hospitality, nursing home care and child care employees—have no paid sick days. The Healthy Families Act can help stop the spread of illness, especially by those workers who have frequent contact with members of the public.Senate Bill 497 would allow workers to earn up to 56 hours (or seven days) of paid sick leave. Workers would earn one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked.  Employers that already provide paid sick time will not have to change their current policies, as long as their existing time can be used for the same purposes.

Click to sign the petition – we’ll deliver in person next week:

Fast Facts on Paid Sick Days

  • Forty percent of private-sector workers, including seventy percent of low-wage workers, have no paid sick days. Nearly two-thirds of restaurant workers have reported cooking or serving food while sick.
  • A recent study from the University of Arizona showed that within four hours of a sick employee coming to work with a flu-like virus, more than 50 percent of office surfaces were contaminated with the virus.
  • Illness costs our national economy $226 billion annually in lost productivity.  The vast majority of this cost—71 percent—is due to “presenteeism,” the practice of sick workers coming to work and infecting their colleagues rather than staying at home.
  • In a 2010 University of Chicago survey, one in eight workers reported that they or a family member had been fired, suspended, written up or penalized—just for taking time off due to personal or family illness.
  • A 2012 study found that a lack of workplace policies like paid sick days contributed to an additional 5 million cases of influenza-like illness during the H1N1 pandemic of 2009.

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