Skip to comments.Pelosi pushes for federal paid sick leave law
Posted on 03/27/2013 12:18:09 PM PDT by markomalley
On the heels of the 20th anniversary of the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi called for new legislation that would require employers to provide up to seven days of paid sick leave a year for workers.
The Family and Medical Leave Act, passed in 1993, allowed for 12 weeks of unpaid leave for workers to take time off for maternity, or care for a sick family member. The law applies to workers at companies larger than 50 people and who work more than 1,250 hours a year, though labor activists say those requirements leave out half the work force.
Pelosi wants a federal law to guarantee paid time off.
Its not just about women, its about families, the former House speaker said Monday while in Boston. Many men take advantage of the Family and Medical Leave Act.
Pelosi has been advocating this proposal as lawmakers debate a higher minimum wage. She said 40 million Americans have no paid sick days, forcing them to work while they are ill or forfeit income, the Portland Press Herald reports.
Currently, lawmakers in Massachusetts are pushing for a state level bill that would allow workers to earn one hour of paid leave for every 30 hours worked.
Connecticut passed similar legislation that allows for workers at companies larger than 50 employees to earn one hour of paid sick leave for every 40 hours worked, though the response from the business community has been less than favorable.
A survey by the Employment Policies Institute (EPI) found that many businesses had to scale back other employee benefits or reduce paid leave in order to comply with the law. Some businesses cut back employee hours while others reduced wages.
Thirty-eight of the 156 businesses who responded said they would hire fewer people as a consequence of the law.
Other actions included offering fewer raises, scaling back on overtime, raising prices, and increasing the cost of other benefits like health insurance, EPI found.
Pelosi aruges that about 40 million workers nationwide have to go to work sick to receive pay.
But EPIs survey concluded that 90 percent of the businesses in Connecticut do not find sickness a problem in the workplace.
Some small business owners complain that Pelosis proposal reflects an adversarial relationship between labor and management.
Everybodys happy, one business owner said of his workers.Some of my employees have been here 20, 25 years. If things were so terrible, I wouldnt have that kind of longevity.
Don’t like the idea, but it is unfortunate there are many workers out there who literally get zero sick or vacation time depending on the fields they work in....
But, not government’s job to fix it.
Obamacare should cover it! AT LEAST 4 weeks paid time off each year for ‘mental health’
yes, another wonderful idea that will cause even more unemployment than Obama and Pelosi have already given us
This will be great for female employment numbers! Do I need a sarc tag?
I think I’ve figured out what the primary goal of a liberal politician is.
To get the private sector and/or the taxpayer to pay for something that they want to “give” to people they want to vote for them.
They don’t seem to do anything else.
Just as with constitutionally indefensible Obamacare, Pelosi is again trying to interfere with 10th Amendment protected state powers.
One reason I went to school was to get a job which had better benefits.
Funny how that works.
I don't take much vacation, so my accruals go over the 480 cap fairly often. I try to get home for my wedding anniversary and Christmas. That blows off 80 hours. I ended up with a 40 hour payout last December.
Doesn’t Europe pretty much take off a whole month in the summer? We see how well that works, why stop at a week?
They won't be in business for long.
I have a question for Nancy: How many of your Pacific island based Star-Kist employees have paid sick leave?
Yeah, I thought so.
“but it is unfortunate there are many workers out there who literally get zero sick or vacation time depending on the fields they work in....”
You can buy insurance for anything. That would fix the entire issue. Every company I worked for even recommended a carrier and a set of policies and worked out group coverage. It wasn’t a law to do so, it is just good business. No government involved so far as I know.
Now, it's been a few years, so it's time to add the paid part in. If they can't get it passed through Congress, they go to their two prong approach: Start hitting the state legislatures where they have the best chances of pushing it through, and also start going through the courts, looking for a sympathetic judge who will, at a minimum, force it to be considered.
After they get a few states to pass it, they'll use them as examples as to how it should be national (not fair for the people of one state to have paid sick leave and neighbor states not!!).
It's how politics work. Repubs should try it.
Because the jobs recovery isn’t slow enough already.
American workers could get a lot more time off too if they were not subsidizing Europe’s security.
If a worker wants benefits he/she must work toward getting a job which offers them, not expect a struggling business-owner to hand them out.
City of Portland, OREGON has done this already...last month
Vacation is WAY over rated IMHO anyhoo...
Once again Nance drank too much coffee, got tweaked and crammed her head up her fundament.
Republicans should just disband, let the Dems completely crash the system, then snatch control when they rebuild the nation and cut them out. It’s the only way you will teach the mass of idiots out there.
not enough folks joining private unions so Stretch and the Gang have to mandate more regulations from the Temple of Smart in the Distric of Corruption.
If FR is representative, that's pretty much happening at the national level. I doubt we'll see a Republican POTUS in my lifetime.
True. I am grateful I went to college and have a job with good benefits. I am extremely grateful after I found out I had cancer over Christmas (just finished treatment and am cured thank God...one of the few cancers you can say that with since it was early and extremely chemo-sensitive)...but anyway, I was so grateful I had enough time to take off for chemo and my wife had plenty of PTO as well so she could spend time with me at the cancer center.
All because we are in fields which have some benefits. People need to work toward it if they want it.
Government can’t step in and provide it.....that will kill any chance of a jobs recovery.
Congratulations on your successful treatment. That’s wonderful. I’m glad you had the benefits to cover it.
Yes, Seattle too. And then small retailers (5 or more employees) threatened to close or reduce employees because they could not afford the extra expense.
The legislature took this up but could not resolve anything this session (not unusual except for raising taxes)
I can see employers complying with this by reducing paid vacation time and/or paid holidays enough to make up for the mandatory paid sick time. This is not something the government should be dictating. At smaller businesses and/or those with mostly part-time employees, this could become very expensive to the employer. And you would have people taking their entire seven days or hourly equivalents, whether they are sick or not, which will just raise the cost of everything to the consumer, reducing sales, etc.
FMLA did nothing but open an avenue for abuse by the demographics who think they are "owed". Yes, there are some who use FMLA as it's meant, but most waste it away and put additional hardship on employers.
Easily. In fact, guaranteed. PTO will be split up (as it used to be) into sick leave and annual leave.
That will both reduce company liability (sick leave is not normally payable upon termination) and reduce effective benefits for most full time employees.
Thanks, Nancy. Thanks a lot.
They could always work in another field.
From what I remember, she tried to exempt those island tuna workers from some law, probsbly min wage, and when that didn’t work they ended up having to lay off a bunch of workers. The unions love her in CA, and I used to point out to them that the workers in her vinyards weren’t union, but they didn’t care because it was her.
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