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Sick and Tired of No Leave

By Greg Kaufmann
The Nation Blog

"'Nothing has brought home the need for paid sick days more than the recession,' said Kevin Miller, senior research associate at IWPR. 'Now more than ever, families need flexible workplace policies that allow them to take a day off when they or their child is sick. Every paycheck counts--particularly for women, low-wage and minority workers, who are the least likely to have access to paid sick days.'

Aside from the moral imperative, the costs and benefits of paid sick days and family leave are also very convincing. According to IWPR, passage of the Healthy Families Act would result in workers saving over $100 million per year in out-of-pocket expenses for the seasonal flue alone; paid family leave to care for elderly parents or other relatives could save over $700 million annually by avoiding temporary placement in care facilities. Allowing workers time to seek preventative care for things like immunizations, counseling, and cancer screening would also reduce health care costs."

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