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Paid Sick Days Expansion Big Win for NYC Workers, Economy, Public Health

March 20, 2014

For Immediate Release: Thursday, March 20, 2014
Contact: Alex Edwards, alex.edwards@berlinrosen.com.com, 202-800-8691

New York City — Family Values @ Work, which helped fight for paid sick days for all New Yorkers, released the following statement from executive director Ellen Bravo applauding Mayor Bill de Blasio for signing into law today an expanded paid sick days bill.

“We applaud our member coalition in New York City and Mayor de Blasio for their commitment to ensuring New Yorkers will not risk their paychecks or their jobs when they are sick. More than 300,000 additional New Yorkers got a much needed lift today, as New York became the second city to build upon an existing paid sick days law and expand its coverage to more working families. As Mayor de Blasio has noted, paid sick days are crucial to addressing the urgency of the inequality crisis — no one should be forced to lose a day’s pay simply because illness strikes.”

“Today’s signing is another reminder that paid sick days are not just good policy, but winning politics — 55% of those polled, and 58% of women voters, said they were less likely to vote for City Council Speaker Christine Quinn because she delayed action on paid sick days for three years. Nationwide, an overwhelming majority of voters said they were more likely to vote for a candidate who supports policies like paid sick days.”

“The legislation, which passed City Council in February by a vote of 45-6, will now require businesses with five or more employees to provide paid sick time to its employees – increasing from the previous threshold of fifteen. Moreover, the bill will now extend to manufacturing firms and contains a more appropriate definition of family, so that workers can use a sick day to care for a grandparent, grandchild or siblings, not just a child or parent. In all, 1.3 million New Yorkers who previously were uncovered will now be able to earn paid sick days.”

“New York’s expansion adds to the growing momentum behind paid sick days across the country. Behind every victory lies an important shift in this country: more workers seeing the possibility of change when they take action together, more business owners realizing this is good for their bottom-line and more elected officials recognizing that they want to stand with working families.”


Family Values @ Work is a consortium of coalitions in 21 states fighting for policies that help Americans be good providers and good caregivers.