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The Call Blog: Mayor De Blasio Signs First Bill Into Law, Expands Paid Sick Leave

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While there are many business owners who don't support this law, we found tonight there were just as many who do support it. A lot of small business owners called in tonight to say it will make their workplaces happier - and heathier. I hope the City now really works with these owners in implementing this law because I think there is a lot more goodwill than people think out there. This is a big change and business owners need some big help.

Mayor de Blasio signed his first bill into law today at an ice cream manufacturer in Brooklyn. The measure requires businesses with five or more employees to give their workers five paid sick days a year. In addition, the law removes exemptions for the manufacturing sector, and adds grandparents, grandchildren and siblings to the list of family members workers can care for using paid sick time.

Supporters say the legislation means workers won't have to lose a day's pay or go to work when they are sick. Opponents worry about the strain the requirement will put on small businesses. The law takes effect in eleven days. Businesses will have six months to comply before facing fines. What do you say?

Are you celebrating the expansion of paid sick leave? How will it affect you? Should the government be telling merchants how to run their business? What does it say to you that this bill is the first one signed by Mayor de Blasio?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

One question, people: Do you want a sick employee sneezing in your ice cream (or any other foods) because they can't afford to take a day off?
Nuff said!

Dina and Ed
Throggs Neck

Nice -- this City Council, made up primarily of third-rate party hacks, Communists in Democrats' clothing, and holier-than-thou reformers, thinks its members know better than any business in this city what those businesses can afford.

You reap what you sow, folks, and mostly you're going to get lay-offs and probably some business closures, which Mr. De Blasio and his crew of reds will dismiss or rationalize away.

Upper West Side

I'm glad our great Mayor Diblasio signed the paid sick leave bill into law it helps the single parents because if they or someone in their family get sick they can stay home and help whoever is sick get better, i don't think any boss want a sick employee coming to work

Upper West Side

Mayor deFascistio continues his attack on freedom and individual rights. The government has no power, no legitimate power to dictate to businesses how they manage their employees. And employees have no right to use the power of government to dictate how businesses are run. If you don't like the terms of employment, go to work somewhere else.

Port Richmond

It seems to me that the new trend in government is to enhance the destruction of the small
business owners in America.
So I see that this mayor is so proud to be at an Ice Cream Manufacturer in Brooklyn to sign
this first bill which I might ad that he was tardy once again (45 mins. late). What gives with
that. Also isn’t he suppose to be setting an example for all the people including most of all
the youngsters. Such forceful consequences are pushed upon the businesses’ in that if they
do not comply within the sixth month period they will be facing fines.
How will the employees prove to the employers the relationships of their kin? This is gone past the
point of no return because they the government are just making up these laws as they go
along. Why is it that some of us are being read the riot act and others get a free pass with laws that
seem to oblige others only on their whims.

[The government needs to stop telling us how to run our business’ ]

Morris Park

I think it is safe to say that there is usually, if not always, a huge disparity between the income of a business owner and his employees. Thus , it seems fair that they be paid if they are too ill too work. Would a food or any other establishment rather their employees come to work and jeopardize others as well as themselves. To me, this should be a natural right.

It's amazing that some business owners want to deprive workers of a benefit that is health related. Is medicare or disability tax a gov't infringement? I think this is a benefit that is long overdue. I applaud our Mayor for standing up for those workers, who really have no voice.

West Brighton

I was listening to your discussion earlier with the employment specialist, and there was one question I was waiting for you to ask ~ but you did not ask it. =(

Does an employee have to provide a doctor's note in order to prove that they are actually sick? Some people may appreciate it when they really need it, but other people may abuse the privilege by taking a day off just to skip a day of work.


Some companies, like Starbucks, pay bonus hours for every 500 hours worked.

Staten Island

Why doesn't the city provide a sick day fund for small business employees. This helps the tax paying business owner and the tax paying employees.

It's easy spending everyone else's money.


Finally, Mayor DiBlasio has dragged New York City into the 21st Century. Just about. We are the only industrialized nation in the Western Hemisphere that treats workers like serfs. Those small business owners who are going to fire employees in order to circumvent the law should go out of business and good riddance.

East Village

Restaurant business's in general, have a reputation for subjecting rules and regulations which impede the morale of their employees, especially when sick time is requested, and this is without sick pay. Sometimes the government needs to step in, and remind employers that human beings should not be penalized for being sick.


Paid sick leave is a wonderful concept. But I see more and more empty commercial properties in Eastern Queens. Perhaps this will work in Manhattan. One of the bigger killers of small businesses are high rents. Just adding an unnecesary expense.

Jack B
Queens Village

I just wish this applied to workers in the public sector. I am so sick but I can't afford to lose a day of work. I got sick from one of my co-workers who came in sick because she couldn't afford to lose a day of work either.

Forest Hills

I applaud this new law. I also believe that for some business owners it takes the Government to police them or they would never do the "right thing" by their employees.

It is the Humane thing to do. People do get sick and they need this time. It's better then sick employees coming to working and spreading their germs around and effecting the whole work force.

Upper West Side

This is great for the NYC working class, if businesses can't afford it, maybe they shouldn't be in business. Making money is about valuing your employees and adjusting to the economic & political reality around you. That makes a great businessman or woman.


Seems like everyone is referring to owners as 'he'

I am married to a successful business owner, and she thinks it's a good idea.

Bay Ridge

With a lot of small businesses in NYC barley hanging on with all the high taxes, insurances, and other fees they pay - this law should not be put on the back on small businesses! Most small business's barley get by! This law should be for businesses 50 employees or more not just 5! I also see a lot of leg-room for abuse of this law by employees by faking sick days knowing they will be paid while the employer will loose productivity and income to pay the employees


If I have a business that is open seven days a week and have 10 employees who work five day work weeks covering the full seven days, if one of my employees calls in sick I effectively have to call in an employee on his/her day off to cover. This effectively costs me double.


If an employee who is genuinely sick comes into work, he can infect his co-workers, causing a sick epidemic. How can an employee work when he's sick. Therefore, paid sick leave is a good thing.

Rego Park

Last time this topic was on the Call a few small business owners called and said that if owners can't afford the minimal amount of money that it costs to give employees this very limited amount of sick days than they shouldn't
be in business. This bill was the right thing to do, period. I wish I
could benefit, I work 2 part time jobs so I get zero sick time. If I don't work I don't get paid.

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