There is a debate going on across the country right now over paid sick leave. There are also a considerable amount of Americans supporting the new laws that are popping up around the issue. Should workers be provided with mandatory paid sick leave? Some cities and states have already said yes.
SyncHR’s neighboring city of San Francisco was actually the first city in the country to pass an ordinance requiring employers to offer paid sick leave to their employees. They did so back in 2007, requiring that, “for every 30 hours worked, an employee accrues one hour of paid sick leave,” (find additional details on the ordinance here). According to this Forbes article, and following San Francisco’s lead, “in the past 12 months…New York City, Portland, Oregon, and Jersey City, New Jersey, have all required employers to offer paid sick leave benefits."
Advocates for the new laws argue it improves public health by keeping the sick at home, or at home caring for an ill family member. With employees allowed to stay home and get well, fewer workers are likely to get fired from taking the time off while sick. Giving employees the flexibility to prioritize their health and family matters also increases company loyalty. Opposing arguments, however, see mandatory paid sick leave as costly and a potential strain for businesses.
One thing is for sure, paid sick leave will continue to be a hot employee issue in 2014. As a Human Resources professional, it is important to make sure your department checks their local and state laws to ensure you are up-to-date on the latest ordinances. As an employees, be sure to check in with your Human Resources department to see about paid sick leave and to learn more.
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