Monday, May 9, 2011

For Mother's Day, Moms want Philadelphia City Council to give them Earned Sick Days

Mother's DayFor Immediate Release:
May 9, 2011

Contact:
Lauren Townsend 215-939-7621
Earned Sick Time Campaign
Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces

For Mother's Day, Moms want Philadelphia City Council to give them Earned Sick Days

Mothers to Speak TODAY, May 9th at 3 pm about Importance of Sick Days
to Take Care of Children and Elderly Parents

“My husband’s family lives in Puerto Rico while mine lives in Germany, leaving us without the kinship-care support we would need in emergency situations. The school’s policy requires a sick child be picked up within an hour of calling the parents. Since we both have paid sick days, my husband and I are able to leave work and pick him up. We can be responsible and caring parents without having the fear that we could lose our jobs or critical pay just because our child needs us.“ - Philadelphia mother, Katja Pigur (son is 6 years old)

WHAT:
Today at 3 pm, Philadelphia mothers will talk about good parenting and why earned sick days are critical in the lives of working parents who sometimes need to be home with sick children to help them get well. The participating moms support the Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces Act (Bill 080474), a bill that would allow Philadelphia workers the opportunity to earn up to seven days of sick time per year.

WHO:
Philadelphia Mothers scheduled to speak on Monday include:
  • Aislyn Washington, mother of 5 from Germantown who recently lost her job because she didn't have paid sick days
  • Sarah Friedman, expectant mother from Mt Airy
  • Kenyette Barnes-Higgs, mother of a 5 year-old and a 2 ½ year old
  • Katja Pigur, mother of a 6 year old boy who is thankful for her paid sick days
  • Rebecca Lovelace, resident of Tioga who does not have sick days and has a mother who needs care

WHEN:
TODAY, Monday, May 9, 2011 at 3:00 PM

WHERE:
Childspace Day Care Center - 13 E. Mount Pleasant Ave. Philadelphia 19119 (corner of Germantown Ave. and Mt. Pleasant Ave)

Background:
Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces Act (Bill 080474) is a bill that would allow Philadelphia workers the opportunity to earn up to seven days of sick time per year. It was voted out of the Public Health and Human Services Committee on March 1, 2011. The bill could affect up to 200,000 workers in Philadelphia who do not have access to paid sick days.

With over 40 percent of Philadelphians lacking earned sick days, a large portion of the population cannot take the time off work to go see a doctor or obtain medical treatment - regardless of the medical coverage they have.

Employees with earned sick days are more likely to stay home when they are sick, limiting the spread of the illness and protecting co-workers, customers, or anyone else they meet during the work day. During the height of the H1N1 pandemic, people were urged to stay home if they had any signs of the flu, however, those without earned sick days were less likely to stay home because they could not afford to. As a result, nearly 8 million H1N1 cases were traced back to employees going to work while sick.

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