The need for paid sick days


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The need for paid sick days

  1. 1. Paid Sick Days in the United States<br />Work-Life Lunch on Family Economic Security<br />Joint event with The National Partnership for Women & Families<br />June 29th, 2011<br />Elise Gould<br />Health Policy Research Director<br />
  2. 2. Introduction<br /><ul><li>Today, nearly 40 million Americans do not have paid sick days
  3. 3. Nearly 40% of private sector workers lack access to paid sick time
  4. 4. Access to sick time varies dramatically by job (e.g. industry occupation, wage)
  5. 5. Access to paid sick days is essential for workers and their families
  6. 6. The cost of providing paid sick days is small for employerswhile the benefits are potentially large</li></li></ul><li>Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics National Compensation Survey.<br />
  7. 7.
  8. 8.
  9. 9. Why sick time is necessary for families<br /><ul><li>Sick children can be forced to go to school because their parents cannot miss work
  10. 10. Paid sick days can help guarantee a monthly income, which results in greater economic security.
  11. 11. Losing pay can be a serious blow to a monthly budget
  12. 12. Risk losing employment</li></li></ul><li>
  13. 13.
  14. 14. April 2011 4.6<br />
  15. 15.
  16. 16. Costs and Benefits for Employers<br />Benefits<br /><ul><li>Reduced worker turnover
  17. 17. Turnover is highly costly to employers (e.g. training and hiring)
  18. 18. Sick pay can increase loyalty
  19. 19. Reduced worker “presenteeism”
  20. 20. Workers show up to work while sick and have greatly reduced productivity
  21. 21. Sick workers can spread illness
  22. 22. These benefits may amount to more than the cost of providing sick pay</li></ul>Costs<br /><ul><li>The costs to businesses are shown to be a very small percentage of total sales
  23. 23. A case study of businesses in Connecticut provides this evidence</li></li></ul><li>Connecticut Case Study<br /><ul><li>Hall and Gould (2011) modeled the costs and benefits of proposed sick pay legislation in Connecticut.
  24. 24. The proposal included the following:
  25. 25. An employee earns one hour of sick time for every 40 hours worked
  26. 26. Up to a maximum of 40 hours per year (5 days)
  27. 27. Applies only to employers with 50 or more employees
  28. 28. Estimated costs
  29. 29. Total sales by industry
  30. 30. Share of sales devoted to payroll
  31. 31. Increase in payroll due to paid sick days proposal
  32. 32. Maximum days taken
  33. 33. Conditional on historical average days
  34. 34. Account for current coverage rates by industry and firm size</li></li></ul><li>
  35. 35. Conclusion<br /><ul><li>Access to paid sick time is essential for American workers and their families
  36. 36. The cost of providing sick time is low for employers and the benefits are potentially large</li>