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Nearly 7 Million Californians to Receive Access to Paid Sick Days

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 10, 2014

Contacts:
Anastasia Ordonez
media@thenextgeneration.org
415-523-8017                                                                                                                                                                       

Nearly 7 Million Californians to Receive Access to Paid Sick Days

California Work & Family Coalition Joins Advocates Across State in Celebrating Historic Act

Los Angeles—Today, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014 (AB 1522), making California the second state in the country to provide paid sick days to its residents. The new law – authored by Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) – will provide up to three paid sick days a year to approximately 6.5 million working Californians. The legislation builds on national momentum and expands access to more people than any other state or locality, and by requiring compliance from employers regardless of their size.

According to research highlighted in an issue brief by Next Generation, sick day laws improve productivity, protect vulnerable employees in low-income industries, and support public health by preventing the spread of disease.

“Californians will now be able to take a day off when they get sick or to care for an ill family member without jeopardizing their income,” said Ann O’Leary, Vice President and Director of the Children & Families program at Next Generation. “With every new state and community that passes paid sick days legislation, we get that much closer to making sure that no family has to choose between their work lives and their family lives. It’s an unfair choice that places us far behind other developed countries. It’s time we made a change.”

A report released by the Washington D.C.-based Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) in August 2014 highlighted how many more Californians than previously thought approximately 44 percent of all working Californians may lack access to paid sick days.

The California Work & Family Coalition, a project of Next Generation, has worked with Assemblymember Gonzalez and with partners across the state to raise awareness about the importance of access to paid sick days. The Coalition will promote the new legislation and continue to build support for local paid sick days campaigns seeking to expand the number of days. Coalition members were disappointed in the exclusion of IHSS homecare workers from the bill and vow to work with Sacramento leadership on legislation that would expand paid sick days to these important workers. 

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About California Work & Family Coalition

The California Work & Family Coalition, a project of Next Generation, is an alliance of community organizations, unions and non-profits protecting every California worker’s right to put their family first. We work together to promote work family policies that help parents, caregivers, children and families thrive. 

Learn more at www.workfamilyca.org and on Twitter @WorkFamilyCA.

About Next Generation

Next Generation promotes solutions to two of the biggest challenges confronting the next generation of Americans:  The risk of dangerous climate change, and the threat of diminished prospects for children and families. Through the use of non-partisan research, policy development, and strategic communications, we identify strategies that help deploy clean, advanced energy technologies; we also work to ensure a level playing field from which today’s kids can build a brighter future.

Learn more at www.thenextgeneration.org, www.facebook.com/thenextgeneration.org and on Twitter @nextgen_USA.

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