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Advancing the rights of working families.

The Need for Paid Sick Leave


It comes as a shock to many Americans, who take for granted that they can stay home from work when they are sick, that 40 to 44 million of their fellow workers don’t have a single paid sick day. In fact, 38 percent of private sector U.S. employees have no paid sick time according to government statistics. Even fewer workers can take time off if their child or another family member is sick.




The good news is that organizations and individuals around the country who care about workers and their families, who care about public health and who believe in basic employment rights are working to change this.

Success Stories

There is growing momentum throughout the United States for laws guaranteeing that workers can earn a minimum amount of paid sick time.

A growing number of paid sick time laws have been passed in cities and states around the country! Click here to view our overview of the paid sick time laws that are in effect (or have been passed into law) as of November 15, 2016, and see below for more background information on all paid sick time legislative successes:

Federal Paid Sick Time

The Healthy Families Act (S. 497 / H.R. 932) has been reintroduced in the House and Senate. The bill would guarantee workers the right to earn up to 7 paid sick days a year to address their own health needs or to care for a sick family member.

Kin Care Laws

Among private sector workers who do have access to paid sick time, only 30% can use that time to care for a sick child.  Nine states and the District of Columbia have passed legislation to address this problem, allowing workers who have paid sick time to use that time to care for a sick family member.  Click here to learn more about kin care laws around the country.

Get Involved

The movement for paid sick time is growing.  Local campaigns are sprouting up around the country and A Better Balance is providing legal advice and support. Find out what’s happening in your community:

Tools and Resources for Paid Sick Time Campaigns

A Better Balance has developed helpful tools and information to assist your paid sick days campaign.   Click here for more.

For more information check out the National Partnership for Women and Families and Family Values at Work.

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