H1N1/Swine Flu: Should Employers Pay Sick Workers to Stay Home?
"Sick workers advised to stay home by their employers shouldn't have to choose between their livelihood and their coworkers' or customer's health." - Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee
The Washington Post reports that Congress is considering legislation mandating that companies give their employees paid sick leave to stay home if they have a contagious illness such as H1N1/ swine flu.
Here is an excerpt from the article:
Congress has also weighed in with a proposal that would mandate employers to offer paid sick leave. Under a bill introduced last week by members of the House Education and Labor Committee, employers with 15 or more workers would be required to provide five paid sick days per year for workers sent home with contagious conditions such as the swine flu...
The National Small Business Association, which has not taken a position on the legislation, has in the past criticized similar proposals as harmful for business owners.
"The more restrictive the government is in how businesses can develop their benefits programs, the less flexible business owners can be," said Molly Brogan, a spokeswoman for the small-business group. "If it's paid sick leave, you're paying somebody who's not going to be there and you have to pay somebody to replace them. That has the potential to affect the bottom line for a lot of small businesses."
Don't forget to check out our H1N1/swine flu reporting resources and our recommendations for best bloggers, aggregators and Twitterers to follow. Share your thoughts in the comments below. You need to be a registered member of ReportingonHealth.org to leave a comment, so if you haven't joined yet, click here. It's easy, quick and free. You can follow us on Twitter, too, @ReportingHealth.