Nearly half of all private U.S. workers receive no paid sick leave. Only one-third of those who do have sick leave can use their days to care for sick children. Most workers have no choice but to take unpaid time off, and some risk losing their job for these unexpected absences. Here in Maryland, and in other states across the country, advocates and policymakers are working to address the problem.
JOTF hosted a forum on October 11 at Baltimore City Community College to discuss the issue.
A panel of three national experts led the conversation. Vicky Lovell, Director of Employment and Work/Life Programs at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, gave an overview of what we know about paid leave—who gets it and who does not—and the impact this has on workers, families, employers, and communities. Jodie Levin-Epstein, Deputy Director of the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), discussed legislative design and strategies for addressing the problem. Kate Kahan, Director of Work & Family Programs at the National Partnership for Women and Families, described what is being done in other states and how to address opposition to sick leave policies.
The forum was co-sponsored by the Open Society Institute, JOTF, and the Baltimore CASH Campaign.
To learn more about the issue and about what is being done in Maryland, please contact Melissa Chalmers Broome at (410) 234 8046.