America needs paid sick leave laws to stop coronavirus from spreading

Photo by Ani Kolleshi on Unsplash

From an opinion piece in The Hill, Terri Gerstein says that the coronavirus makes it clear that we need paid sick leave that includes paid sick leave for independent contractors. Terri writes:

Coronavirus illustrates the harm of allowing large companies, including those in the gig economy, to misclassify their workers as independent contractors instead of employees. We also need a sustainable solution to this, but there is an immediate need. Drivers, delivery workers, and house cleaners interact with the public, leading to higher than average potential exposure and spread. They need paid leave to stay home while sick. One approach to consider is the Massachusetts paid family and medical leave law, which covers businesses that use 1099 forms, indicating independent contractor status, for over 50 percent of the labor force across the state.

Ideally, our nation would have had robust paid sick leave laws long ago. But this is not a perfect world. Congress should take action, as should states and cities. If they need to make imperfect compromises, like a sunset provision or subsidy program, they should not hesitate to do so.

Read the full story at America needs paid sick leave laws to stop coronavirus from spreading | TheHill

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