Thursday, March 30, 2017
The United States Is Still The Only Developed Nation Without A Guarantee Of Paid Medical Leave For Workers
To it's great shame, the United States remains the only developed nation that refuses to guarantee workers at least some paid medical leave. While a few employers offer some paid sick days and some offer paid medical leave for new parents, no business in the United States is required to do that -- and quite a few take advantage of that to offer nothing. In those businesses, an employee who gets sick or has a baby would lose their pay, and could lose their job completely.
But while our Republican-controlled federal government does not want to require businesses to offer paid medical leave, that is not the feeling of the general public. As the chart above shows, 85% believe workers should receive paid medical leave for a serious medical condition, 82% want mothers to receive paid leave after having a baby (and 69% would extend that to fathers also), and 67% say a worker should receive paid leave to help care for a family member.
Who should pay for that medical leave. Members of both political parties say it should be employers rather than the government (and they like the idea of giving employers tax credits to do so).
The public also believes guaranteeing paid medical leave would be good for the economy (65% to 34%), for families (94% to 4%), for women (93% to 5%), for men (87% to 11%), and for most employers (52% to 47%). They do however say that it would not be good for small businesses (41% to 57%). That could be addressed through some kind of government help for those small businesses.
The charts above are from the Pew Research Center. The information is from two surveys done between November 17th and December 14th. The first queried 2,029 adults, and had a 2.3 point margin of error. The second questioned 5,934 adults, and had a 2.1 point margin of error.