Paid sick and safe leave legislative update: February 25, 2015

Photo credit: Ryan Hyde/Flickr Creative CommonsEveryone occasionally needs to take a few days off – to recover from the flu, tend to a sick child, or take an ailing parent to the doctor. Yet 1 million Washington workers don’t get a single paid sick day, including many in restaurants, retail and even health care. Building on our 2015 Legislative Agenda, EOI has set out the following policy goal for 2015:

Ensure workers statewide have access to paid sick and safe leave. Patterned after Seattle’s successful law, paid sick and safe leave will assure workers in firms with more than 4 employees the right to earn paid leave for illness, preventative care, or other health needs of the worker or a worker’s family member, or to deal with the consequences of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking.

Progress: House Bill 1356 (Establishing minimum standards for sick and safe leave from employment, sponsored by Rep. Jinkins) was heard by the House Committee on Labor and passed out of committee in late January. In mid-February the bill was heard by the House Committee on Appropriations and also passed out of committee. We expect it to pass the full House of Representatives in early March and be referred to the Senate. (Companion Senate Bill 5306, sponsored by Senator Cyrus Habib, was not scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee.)

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