95.3 / 88.5 FM Grand Rapids and 95.3 FM Muskegon
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Paid sick time advocates lobby lawmakers

Supporters of requiring employers to offer paid sick leave to their workers were at the state Capitol lobbying lawmakers to adopt a bill if and when it’s presented to them.

A petition campaign is gathering signatures to put the question to the Legislature, or on the November ballot.

Danielle Atkinson is an organizer of the campaign. She says a lot of workers have a stake in the outcome.

“Over 40 percent of the (privately employed) Michigan workforce doesn’t have a single hour of earned sick time,” Atkinson said.

She says earned time off can be a health issue for the public at large, and people who don’t have paid time off are more likely to work through an illness.

“Going to a restaurant and coming in contact with a restaurant worker that doesn’t have any earned sick time can be extremely hazardous for the rest of us.”

Atkinson says the group expects to meet a June 1 deadline to submit the 252,523 petition signatures required. It’s set a goal of 350,000 signatures.

The campaign failed to meet a self-imposed January deadline.

The effort is opposed by business groups that say the government should not impose a new and potentially expensive mandate on employers.

Related Content