Jersey Journal

Should Businesses Be Forced To Provide Paid Sick Days?

The Jersey Journal — Thursday, September 5, 2013

By The Jersey Journal

Following the lead of New York City, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop is proposing a city ordinance that would require every employer in the city with 10 or more workers to provide paid sick time for employees, even the part-timers.

Fulop's initiative won praise from several progressive groups yesterday.

"Every worker should be able to recover from an illness or take care of a sick family member without risking their livelihoods," Phyllis Salowe-Kaye, executive director of watchdog group New Jersey Citizen Action, said in a statement. "Mayor Fulop's proposal will provide real economic security to many low-wage workers, and it will also protect the public health while strengthening the city's economy as a whole."

But Ward C City Councilman Rich Boggiano blasted the proposal.

"I don't think it's right," he said. "Government should stay out of small business."

Raju Patel, president of the Jersey City Asian Merchant Association, also panned Fulop's proposal, saying small businesses wouldn't be able to afford it "in this economy."

"I don't like anything being forced," said Patel, who runs a Newark Avenue travel agency that now has no employees. "This is a free country, my friend."

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