Less than 24 hours after the Portland City Council passed an ordinance that will let workers in the city earn paid sick days, the Philadelphia City Council has approved a similar measure that would guarantee Philadelphians the same right. Members of the City Council have, once again, demonstrated their commitment to the needs and will of Philadelphia residents — and made clear that momentum for a national paid sick days standard is undeniable.
We urge Mayor Nutter, who vetoed the paid sick days bill the City Council passed in 2011, to take a second look and sign this common sense proposal. For the sake of the more than 100,000 Philadelphians who would be able to care for their own health and the health of their families without sacrificing their economic security if this law goes into effect, we encourage him to recognize what is at stake, the widespread benefits of paid sick days policies and, most importantly, the will of Philadelphia residents and the City Council. And if he chooses to veto the bill again, we urge the City Council to honor the will of the people and override the veto.
Signing this bill is the right thing to do for Philadelphia workers, businesses, the public health and the local economy, as we have seen in places across the country where paid sick days laws already exist. San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Seattle and Connecticut have laws in place, and they are working well. Philadelphians who work for businesses that contract with the city have been able to earn paid sick days since 2012. Approving this bill extends that basic and much-needed right to more working people.
We commend the Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces, the City Council members who supported the bill, and all of the workers, businesses and advocates who contributed to this victory. Their commitment to a healthier, more productive Philadelphia adds to the tremendous energy and support for these policies we have seen recently with the passage of a bill in Portland yesterday and similar efforts in New York City, Vermont and dozens of other places. With members of Congress set to introduce the Healthy Families Act next week, the case for a national standard is strong.”
The National Partnership for Women & Families drafted and led the fight for the Family and Medical Leave Act. The organization is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, access to quality health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at www.NationalPartnership.org.