Three States, 18 Other Jurisdictions – and Counting: Oregon Will Soon Be the Fourth State to Guarantee Paid Sick Days

Statement of Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families

“Members of the Oregon House of Representatives secured a major victory for the state’s working families, businesses and economy today by approving a bill that will guarantee workers the right to earn paid sick time they can use to recover from common illnesses and care for their families. This is a great day for Oregon that further strengthens the growing and increasingly successful movement to extend this basic right to all workers in the country.

When Governor Brown signs this bill, Oregon will become the fourth state with a statewide paid sick days law, joining Connecticut, California and Massachusetts. Eighteen other jurisdictions — including Portland, Oregon — also have or will soon have such laws in place, and many were passed in just the last two years. With this new victory, the momentum for paid sick days in this country is even more undeniable.

Once Oregon’s law takes effect early next year, 47 percent of private sector workers in the state who currently cannot earn a single paid sick day will begin to earn the sick time they have long deserved. They will no longer have to choose between their jobs and staying home when they get the flu or a child has strep throat. And there is a strong and growing body of evidence that shows the state’s workers, families, businesses and economy will be healthier and better off as a result.

The National Partnership commends the Oregon legislature for leading on this critical and common sense policy, and especially the Everybody Benefits Coalition for bringing together the broad and diverse group of workers, businesses, lawmakers and advocates that made this victory possible. As progress like this continues across the country, the demand for a national paid sick days standard like the Healthy Families Act only gets stronger.”

The National Partnership convenes a broad and diverse coalition that supports the Healthy Families Act. More information can be found at PaidSickDays.org.

About the National Partnership

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help all people meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.

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