AARP salutes Mayor Steven Fulop for introducing an ordinance mandating most companies provide earned paid sick leave in Jersey City. This is a momentous step forward in allowing lower wage workers to take care of their loved ones, prevent the spread of illnesses at work, all while not depriving employees of the income they depend on. The bill, if passed by the city council later this month, would make Jersey City, the state’s second largest city, the first municipality in the state to mandate sick leave.
The proposal in Jersey City, which covers private employers, is more generous than most. It requires that businesses with 10 or more employees provide workers with up to five paid sick days; those with fewer employees must give up to five unpaid sick days. Workers accrue one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked.
AARP encourages Newark to follow suit in creating a paid sick leave bill for its residents and the New Jersey Legislature should adopt a similar proposal in legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt (D-Camden), chairwoman of the Women and Children Committee, and Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen).
Marilyn Askin, Esq.
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AARP Chief Legislative Advocate