Proposed Federal Legislation Provides Paid Sick Time In 12 States

paid-sick-time.jpgAccording to the Fox Business article posted this week, “12 States Push Laws to Require Paid Sick Time“, some 46 million U.S. workers lack paid sick time.   Lawmakers in 12 states are trying to change those statistics.   States such as California, West Virginia, Minnesota and Connecticut have proposed legislation that would require businesses to provide paid sick leave.

On one hand, I can see how this will become another hurdle for a small business to overcome.   “How will  I afford to offer the paid sick time?”   “Will my employees abuse the system?”   “How will  my staff cover  the workload  when  employees are  absent?”   “Will they give me enough notice?”   The proposed federal legislation would provide 7 days of paid sick time to employees who work 30 hours or more a week.

But on the other hand, I feel that  full time employees  deserve the paid sick time.   The majority of U.S. families have two working parents.   If  our children or ourselves become  sick, we should have the opportunity to take a  couple days off without worrying about how it will affect our paychecks.    

So I ask, which side of the fence do you stand on?   For those of you with small businesses, how would this law affect you if it become mandatory in your state?



12 Comments Proposed Federal Legislation Provides Paid Sick Time In 12 States

  1. Walt

    I understand what you’re saying about sick time. But 7 days a year is a lot, especially for someone who works just 30 hours a week.

    Most small business employers try to be EXTREMELY flexible on working hours and give time off for emergenices without question, and overall are supportive of the employee.

  2. Don

    It’s nice when employers are flexible but not everyone can afford to take time off unpaid. I think a law like this would benefit the whole workplace. Employees get to stay home, rest and get better faster and without contaminating the whole office.

  3. Martin Lindeskog

    My motto: If you don’t work, you don’t get paid. If you are not at the office, how will you contribute to the production? On the other hand, I don’t think you should go to work if you are sick or if you children are sick, but don’t think you should get paid for not working. The solution would be less taxes and more private insurance.

    Here is Sweden the sick pay and “care of children” absence from work has been misused and they have been tougher to enforce the rules and have been doing control checks and see if you really are sick or have a valid reason for not working.

    My hard effective medicine and remedy: Less rules and regulations, more freedom!

  4. Martin Lindeskog

    Could you please list the 12 states? I hope Americans for Free Choice in Medicine will put the “spotlight” on this trend. Please read my post, Sicko and Socialized Medicine, if you want to learn more about AFCM.

  5. Bianca Aquino


    It’s a good benefit for all employees if this is the case but it’s also inevitable that such cases will be abused. For me, I think health insurances that they availed of and our consideration to have the rest they need to fully recover is enough. If I am the business owner, I can’t afford to be that extremely generous and give them a sick paid off.

  6. NYCtek

    Is “small business” a euphemism for “inefficient shoestring operation that cannot turn a decent profit?”

    Survival of the fittest I say — not employees, but businesses. If the only way a business operates profitably is through treating employees like machinery, then it, like a Plantation of the Old South, has no right to exist further.

    Sorry. If you want to own a business like that, go open shop in China.

  7. chris

    I have to say that I’m a bit surprised by most of the comments here on this topic. I realize that systems like that can be abused, but NYCtek says it best “. . .If the only way a business operates profitably is through treating employees like machinery . . .” Isn’t that the truth?

    And here’s what an attitude such as that perpetuates because I worked for a privately owned family run small business that operated like that years ago – it only promoted those that were sick to come to work. No work = no pay. So that person comes to work ill, uses the copier, the doorknobs, the telephones, the lunch room, the bathroom facilities – and then BAM! Within a week, 2-3 others are now sick and still coming to work. A couple days after that, the entire office is stricken and production comes to a screeching halt.

    Because at least one or two of the employees (when there were only 7 to begin with) eventually had to go to the doctors and were forced take time off. Now the office staff is two employees short. And it never failed that at least one or two more were eventually forced to take time off too. I’ve even seen them forced to take additional time off weeks later because now, their families and children are ill as well.

    And all this because you couldn’t offer a day or two of paid sick time? Doesn’t seem worth it. And honestly, 7 days is one week’s pay and may seem like a lot, but 7 days out of 365 in a year seems a fair amount of time to me. When I’m stricken with a cold, it turns into bhronchitis which then usually turns into strep and then ends up in my chest for two weeks. I can be under the weather for weeks. Even as a child, my mother said I was always sick for weeks at a time. Even the flu generally takes 3-5 days to move through most of us.

    I dunno. I see both sides of the fence here. Maybe not 7 days, but something should definitely be given.

  8. Jacinta

    Wow! You don’t do sick leave over there?

    Sick leave is a fundamental workplace right for all permanent employees in Australia where I do business. My employee contracts allow 10 days per year which may be accumulated from one year to the next but not paid out on resignation. (Note: casual employees in Australia do not get an entitement to sick leave but their hourly rate is loaded to compensate for this – best I share the full story).

    Yes from time to time the entitlement is abused but I would much rather a sick employee stay at home and recover and hence loose one or two days of productivity rather than have them be unproductive for weeks on end or share their ailments with other workers.

    Small business can survive with this modest investment in their team of employees – every small (and big) business in Australia is testament to that.

  9. Geoff Karcher

    Should it not be up to the business owner to make these decisions? In our business, we choose to give 8 days paid time off (one additional for each year of employment). But that is our choice.

    If a small business owner chooses not to offer this benefit, then it is your choice not to work for them.

    The government should have nothing to do with this, the market can take care of itself. We don’t need to pay more taxes so that the government can hire more babysitters to watch over the business community.

  10. Martin Lindeskog

    Geoff Karcher,

    Great response! I see hope for America when I read this kind of comment. My long-range goal is to return to the Land of Opportunity. It is important to go back to the ideas of the Founding Fathers and take if from there and strive for a second renaissance. I am a student of Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism, and a supporter of the Ayn Rand Institute. For an example, read Yaron Brook’s article, The Government Did It, on Forbes site.

    Best Premises,

    Martin Lindeskog – American in Spirit.
    Gothenburg, Sweden.

  11. Clay Scroggin

    I think our government has placed enough requirements and restrictions on the business community. Is there any wonder more and more business continue to outsource jobs overseas. They don’t only outsource those jobs because of tax savings. They also outsource these jobs becasue of OSHA, EEO, FMLA, unions, law suites, and yes benefits costs.

  12. Carl Hughes

    More of the “big brother is watching you” While yes I believe any and all businesses should offer sick leave or some king of pto paid time off to employees I do not believe we need more regulation. I think back to my grandfathers day during the depression If you were out sick there was someone standing in line to take your job that very day


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