Family Values @ Work

Why isn’t paid sick leave the norm?

Why isn’t paid sick leave the norm?

January 14, 2015

Dear President Obama,

When my father was in hospice care in 2006, I was able to take time off with pay to be with him. I had earned a sick day each month I taught in a public middle school, which allowed me to spend a week at a time with him and support my mother emotionally.

He died in October, and with personal leave (minus $50 a day for a substitute) I was able to spend a week with my siblings until after the memorial service the following weekend.

It never crossed my mind that I had a choice about being with my dad and my family. But the effect of paid leave time meant I never felt guilty for losing income on which my family depended. We were able to pay our bills and eat as usual.

The death of a parent is heartwrenching enough without fear of job loss or lost wages.
Why isn’t paid sick leave the norm?

I hope you will speak to this in your State of the Union address.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

Emily
Durham, NC

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