National Partnership for Women & Families

Research Library

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How important is it to you that Congress and the President consider new laws to help keep working families economically secure, including ensuring workers the right to earn paid sick days and creating a system of family and medical leave insurance - very important, somewhat important, not too important, or not important at all?
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Nearly one in two people in the United States have a chronic medical condition that requires regular care1 - and chronic conditions are becoming more prevalent. At the same time, more than 40 million U.S. workers don't have access to paid sick days to recover from illness, care for a sick family member, or manage chronic illnesses.
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Across the political spectrum, more of our nation’s leaders acknowledge that 21st century families face significant challenges in meeting their responsibilities at home and on the job.
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The American Productivity Audit (APA) is a telephone survey of a random sample of 28,902 U.S. workers designed to quantify the impact of health conditions on work. Lost productive time (LPT) was measured for personal and family health reasons and expressed in hours and dollars.
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A 2011 letter urging members of Congress to establish a national paid sick days standard that would help working families meet their health and financial needs, while boosting business productivity and improving worker retention.
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On July 5th, 2011, Connecticut became the first state to pass a law giving many workers the right to earn paid sick days.
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Paid sick days victories in Philadelphia and Connecticut confirms recent polling results: there is deep and unwavering geographic and key demographic group support for legislation that guarantees all citizens the opportunity to earn paid sick days from their employers
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Millions of Americans who are elderly, disabled, or chronically ill rely on family caregivers, as do our nation's children. Many of these family caregivers are struggling to manage both their caregiving responsibilities and the jobs they need to support their families.
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Key findings from the 2010 NORC/Public Welfare Foundation national survey on Paid Sick Days
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The 111th Congress Work and Family Agenda focuses on three areas: 1. Guaranteeing workers paid sick days for short-term, common illnesses; 2. Guaranteeing workers paid family and medical leave to care for longer-term, serious health conditions and to bond with new children; and 3. Correcting and expanding the FMLA to cover more workers.
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Working Sick, Getting Stiffed: How Some of America's Biggest Companies Fail Their Workers and Jeopardize Public Health. 2007, Association of Community Organizations for Reforms Now, ACORN's Healthy Workers, Healthy Families Campaign for Paid Sick Days.
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Valuing Good Health: An Estimate of Costs and Savings for the Healthy Families Act, 2005, by Vicky Lovell. Institute for Women's Policy Research, Washington, DC
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Work-Family Benefits: Which Ones Maximize Profits? 2001, by Christine Siegwarth Meyer et al., Journal of Managerial Issues, vol. 13, no. 1
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One Sick Child Away From Being Fired: When "Opting Out" Is Not an Option. 2006, Joan C. Williams, Center for WorkLife Law, UC Hastings College of Law, San Francisco, California
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A bill to provide for paid sick leave to ensure that Americans can address their own health needs and the health needs of their families.
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No Time to be Sick: Why Everyone Suffers when Workers Don't Have Paid Sick Leave, 2004, by Vicky Lovell, Institute for Women's Policy Research, Washington, DC
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Getting Time Off: Access to Leave Among Working Parents, 2004, by Katherin Ross Phillips, Urban Institute, Washington, DC
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Women, Work and Family Health: A Balancing Act, 2003, Issue Brief, An Update on Women's Healthy Policy, The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation
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The survey results could not be clearer: It is time for policymakers to guarantee access to paid sick days to the over 40 million U.S. workers who currently lack them. Workers should not have to risk their job to care for their families and shouldn't have to risk their own-well-being—and the public's health—to do their job.
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Grandparents are the glue that holds many families together—yet our workplace laws don't honor their critical role.
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