Low-Income Latinos Are Least Likely To Have Sick Days

Credit: Flickr Public Domain
Credit: Flickr Public Domain

New York City last week mandated that companies with five or more employees offer at least five paid sick days to their workers, becoming one of only a handful of cities to establish paid sick leave.
Meanwhile, 10 states have passed laws prohibiting local governments from establishing sick-leave laws.

A new analysis from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, a nonprofit that advocates for pro-family policies, found that in 2012 it was primarily poor, Hispanic workers who were most likely to go without paid sick days. Overall, the organization found that 39 percent of private-sector workers over the age of 18 must choose between getting paid or staying home when they fall ill.

Most health departments recommend that sick workers don’t handle food, but a CDC survey of 491 restaurant workers in 2011 found that a fifth had worked while sick with vomiting or diarrhea.
Small-business advocacy groups are staunchly opposed to sick-day legislation, arguing it would cause a drop-off in hiring. But other research reports show that after California’s leave law was established, most employers saw either no effect or a positive impact. And after a San Francisco municipal sick-leave law was enacted, workers took fewer days than they were eligible for.

In a past life, I covered small business, and while it’s true that some entrepreneurs are mostly concerned about their bottom lines, others are genuinely short-staffed. Plus, some business owners say that because turnover in retail tends to be high, they don’t trust their employees not to play hooky:
Read full story: http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/03/poor-and-hispanic-workers-are-least-likely-to-have-sick-days/284232/

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