A bill at the Capitol would ensure workers can earn paid sick days.
State Representative Cory Mason (D-Racine) says his legislation would provide economic security for working families in Wisconsin, by setting a workplace standard for paid sick days. Currently, 46 percent of the workforce doesn’t have sick days.
“Every time there’s an illness with themselves or their children or a family member they are faced with an awful decision between coming to work contagious or being unable to take care of a child or a loved one, and their own economic security with their job.”
Mason says workers lacking sick time simply cannot stay home when they get sick because many are living paycheck to paycheck. And, they certainly can’t leave work to provide care to a sick family member.
Critics say this proposal would be costly for employers and allows for abuse of the benefit.
Milwaukee had passed a paid sick leave ordinance in 2008, though Governor Walker later (May 5, 2011) nullified that mandate and barred other municipalities from enacting rules different than state standards.
Martha De La Rosa is the Wisconsin Director of 9to5. “Having paid sick time off is so critical, especially for low-wage workers.”
The Earned Sick Days Act would allow workers to earn up to nine paid sick days each year. Workers at businesses with fewer than 10 employees could earn no more than five paid sick days each year.
Representative Cory Mason (D-Racine), Senator Nikya Harris (D-Milwaukee), and Rep Melissa Sargent (D-Madison) are circulating the bill for legislative co-sponsorship this week and plan to formally introduce it next week.