Mandatory Sick Days Or Alternately, Socialism On The March!

The business hating socialists that have taken over Congress are planning to try to force all companies to pay for sick days:

“With the Democratic Congress expected to move quickly to raise the minimum wage, many Democrats, women’s organizations and liberal groups are gearing up for a fight on another workplace issue: paid sick days.

Supporters point to studies showing that nearly half of American workers do not receive paid sick days. But many Republicans and businesses complain that such legislation would impose another mandate on companies, driving up their costs.

Advocates of paid sick leave cite workers like Naomi Nakamura, who lost a week’s pay when her 103-degree fever forced her to miss five days from her job at a video rental store in San Francisco.

Ms. Nakamura said, “Some employees didn’t want to lose their pay, so they showed up for work even though they had strep throat, and they just spread it to other people.”

Last month, San Francisco voters approved a measure requiring all employers to provide paid sick days, making it the first jurisdiction in the nation with such a requirement. The vote was 61 percent to 39 percent.

Now supporters are planning a big push for sick day legislation not just in Congress, but in Maine, Maryland, Montana and several other states. Senator Edward M. Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat, introduced a bill last year to require companies with at least 15 employees to provide seven paid sick days a year, but that bill languished in the Republican-led Congress.

Now that Democrats have won control of Congress, Mr. Kennedy, the incoming chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, is more optimistic.

“It has a wildfire of support across the country,” he said. “When you talk to workers, this is, besides an increase in the minimum wage, the most important issue for these families. This is a families issue. This is a values issue.”

Mr. Kennedy’s bill, like a House bill sponsored by Rosa DeLauro, a Connecticut Democrat, would provide a total of seven paid sick days not just when workers are ill, but when members of their families are ill — or need to go to the doctor for checkups and tests.

A big problem with not having paid sick days, Mr. Kennedy said, is that many parents, not wanting to miss work, let their sick children go to school, spreading their illnesses. Mr. Kennedy said his bill would guarantee paid sick days to 66 million who do not now have them.”

Democrats always talk about a strong economy and then once they get into office, they immediately start to saddle businesses with all sort of regulations and extra expenses that kill growth, just like this one.

Furthermore, whether a business has paid sick days or not isn’t something that Congress should even be involved with. Nobody puts a gun to your head and forces you to work for a company that doesn’t have paid sick days. That’s just one factor out of many that people take into consideration when they choose to go to work for a company.

Moreover, let me tell you that in my experience, sick days are heavily abused. Where I used to work, we did have paid sick days and initially, they carried over from year to year. Well, after they changed that policy so that the sick days didn’t carry over, everybody I knew took them just like impromptu vacation days from that point forward. I’d bet you 95% of the sick days weren’t actually used by people who were sick and I can tell you from personal experience that there were a lot of days I stayed out of work because I was dog tired from not getting enough sleep 3 or 4 nights in a row or because I woke up with a headache or the sniffles. Could I fairly say that I didn’t feel great? Sure. Did the fact that I had a paid sick day influence my decision not to show? Oh, you bet. Let me put it this way: after I was at the company for 5 years, I had 12 paid sick days and never once did I finish the year with one of them left over. On the other hand, since I started working for myself on RWN, I think I have taken maybe 1 or 2 sick days in 21 months.

Long story short, this idea would saddle a lot of businesses with an extremely expensive new cost and it would also drive the number of sick days taken way, way up. So for businesses, it’s a stone cold loser on both ends and it would undoubtedly have a big negative economic impact.

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