“…it (is) better for an employee to call in sick, take care of their illness and not contaminate the other staff. The number of employees struggling to work while sick was drastically reduced. The H1N1 virus in 2009 demonstrated the value of keeping sick employees out of the workplace…And best of all, according to the Centers for Disease Control, workers with paid sick leave are 28 percent less likely to suffer work-related injuries. People in construction, restaurants or hospitals who do physically demanding jobs are more likely to injure themselves (or someone else) if they are working while sick, weak and fatigued…”
The Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us that 39 percent of people employed in private industry do not have paid sick leave as a benefit.
And 81 percent of service workers earning $10.50 or less have no paid sick leave. These are the people behind the cash register, serving you food in a restaurant, cleaning offices and hotel rooms and handing you your ticket when you go out to see a movie.
The information comes from studies conducted by the Centers for Disease Control, the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Women’s Institute of Policy Research study of San Francisco’s paid sick leave ordinance. Before San Francisco enacted its ordinance in 2007, the restaurants and mom-and-pop businesses fought hard to prevent it. They predicted the cost of paid sick days would put them out of business. In 2011 a detailed study was done and employers are happy their fears were not realized. There was no discernible increase in payroll costs.
Turnover decreased because employees didn’t need to change jobs to get paid sick leave. The city ordinance requiring paid sick leave leveled the field for all employers, and good employees stayed in place longer.