Thursday, December 25, 2014

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Paid Sick Leave To Begin After Council Overrides Mayoral Veto

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TWC News: Paid Sick Leave To Begin After Council Overrides Mayoral Veto
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In addition to passing the mayor's $70 billion budget and controversial NYPD oversight bills, the City Council early Thursday overrode Mayor Michael Bloomberg's veto on paid sick leave legislation.

As a result, city businesses with 20 or more employees will have to give five paid sick days a year beginning next April.

The same applies in late 2015 to businesses with at least 15 employees.

"Very good, very good, very good. I'm happy," said one Park Slope worker.

Some, though, are bracing for the change.

Roland Molina, a car service owner in Brooklyn, tells NY1 he already offers his staff paid sick time. But it may be a hassle for other employers who cannot step in themselves or find a replacement worker. And, there's the added cost.

"They're paying them so much and now they have to pay them more," Molina said.

Kikki Hadrian, a cafe owner in Hillcrest, said paid sick days might encourage dishonest workers to take advantage of an employer.

"If we get a good employee they might not think that, but if we get a bad employee, maybe 'Oh, okay, I got paid anyway so I'm not gonna come; the owner is rich anyway, so I'm not going to come,'" Hadrian noted.

Brooklyn deli owner Jimmy Ghanam, who employees six people around the clock, said it's a matter of respect. He already offers paid sick days, and applauds the newly passed bill.

"If somebody got sick for one day or two days I don't cut their salary. I give them full salary because when somebody work for you 10, 15 years and got one day sick or something I feel bad if I cut the money from them," Ghanam said.

New York now joins Portland, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington DC in mandating paid and unpaid sick days. But these new rules could disappear, if the economy turns for the worse.

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