(Ithaca) The Tompkins County Workers’ Center today calls on all employers in Tompkins County to immediately implement policies ensuring that all workers have access to paid sick leave for the duration of the coronavirus outbreak. This is necessary so that workers are not penalized for doing the right thing: STAYING HOME FROM WORK IF THEY’RE FEELING SICK. Staying home avoids potentially exposing co-workers to a potentially lethal virus, if they do not come in to work with flu-like symptoms or if they have possibly been exposed to the coronavirus.
“We are facing a public and occupational health emergency,” said Pete Meyers, TCWC Coordinator, “but workers who do the right thing and stay home when ill too often face financial hardship or even termination as a result. But now is not the time for business as usual.”
Paid sick leave is not a statutory requirement in the United States, as it is in many countries and a few states and cities. While some employers do provide paid sick leave, many – approximately one-third of all employers – do not.
“Workers are guaranteed the right to a safe and healthy workplace,” said Tom Joyce, Chair of the Midstate Council for Occupational Safety and Health. “But employers who do not provide adequate sick pay, proper training, personal protective equipment, and other measures to prevent the spread of infectious diseases – make a mockery of that protection.”
Coronavirus Outbreak: Tompkins Workers’ Center Calls on Employers to Grant Paid Sick Leave