Family Values @ Work

Rhode Island Will Be Eighth State with Paid Sick Days!

Rhode Island Will Be Eighth State with Paid Sick Days!

September 20, 2017

Statement by Family Values @ Work:

Today, Rhode Island joins its New England neighbors Massachusetts, Vermont and Connecticut, as well as the 37 other jurisdictions that have created new laws ensuring workers’ access to paid sick days. Nearly 100,000 Rhode Islanders who work without paid sick days can now count on the fact that they won’t be forced to ignore their own health needs or choose between caring for their families and providing for them. Rhode Island’s law has the strongest family definition of the statewide paid sick day laws in New England, allowing workers to care for loved ones whether or not they are directly related by blood or marriage. This law also covers safe time, so that workers can take time to deal with domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking, or so that they can care for a loved one who needs safe time support.

Family Values @ Work congratulates workers and advocates in Rhode Island on their efforts to make paid sick days a priority issue for their legislature. We had hoped that an earlier, stronger version of the bill would prevail because it would have guaranteed more workers paid sick days and would not have included a provision barring cities in Rhode Island from passing protections more robust than the state’s law.  While there is more work to do, both nationally and in Rhode Island, we applaud this important first step.

Congratulations to all the groups in the Rhode Island Earned Sick Days Campaign that made this win possible, including RI Working Families Party, Economic Progress Institute, RI Kids Count, RI Coalition Against Domestic Violence, RI Center for Justice, SEIU, Women’s Fund of Rhode Island, RI NOW, and Planned Parenthood.