Early this morning, the New York City Council voted overwhelmingly to guarantee workers the right to earn paid sick days — taking a significant step forward for the country in giving workers this fundamental and common sense right. When the law is fully implemented, approximately one million workers will have the right to earn the time they need to recover from common illnesses or to care for their families without sacrificing their financial stability. That’s nearly doubling the number of workers nationwide who are covered by paid sick days laws. It is truly a historic day.
The Council’s vote today overrides the veto issued by Mayor Bloomberg earlier this month, despite a growing body of evidence that shows the proposal will benefit the city, working families, businesses, the local economy and the public’s health. Fortunately, the City Council demonstrated a clear understanding of the need for and benefits of paid sick days standards and now the bill will become law.
Today’s victory also strengthens the nationwide movement for paid sick days. New York is now the fifth city to guarantee workers the right to earn paid sick days, following the lead of San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Seattle and Portland, Oregon, as well as the state of Connecticut. Together, these victories and activity in roughly 20 other cities and states are paving the way for the national paid sick days standard America’s working families want, need and deserve.
We commend the coalition of workers, businesses and advocates that worked for more than four years to make this victory for New York City and the nation possible. Thanks to the coalition’s perseverance, more working families will soon have the support they need, and we are one step closer to securing the truly family friendly nation all working people deserve.