In New York City, workers in low-paying jobs will benefit the most from the implementation of paid sick days, including a large share of workers in food service and caring sectors of the economy. That is, people whose job it is to deal directly with people. People with contagious diseases won’t feel pressure to show up to work sick, especially to prepare and serve food or care for children or the elderly — workers in New York City who currently do not have this option and are likely to pass their illness on to their colleagues and clients.
Paid sick days boost productivity by creating healthier and more productive work environments as well as improving the bottom line. Evidence overwhelmingly points to this policy as is the best path forward for workers family businesses and their customers.
Heather Boushey is executive director and chief economist at the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, a grantmaking and research organization. Alexandra Mitukiewicz is a researcher at Equitable Growth.