Remember the bill — vetoed twice by Mayor Nutter — that wouldn’ve required the city’s small employers to let their worker take paid sick leave? Well similar laws have been adopted elsewhere, and now we’re getting the first official studies on how they’ve turned out.
Answer: Not bad.
Research in Connecticut, whose sick leave law went into effect in 2012, shows a minimal financial effect. A report released this month by the Center for Economic and Policy Research and the City University of New York’s Murphy Institute said many of the Connecticut businesses already had paid sick leave. Nearly 47 percent of 251 companies surveyed said the law hadn’t affected costs. Only 6.5 percent said costs rose 5 percent or more. And 60 percent said keeping records was somewhat or very easy. The think tank’s research tends to support paid time off for workers, including family and medical leave.
Even some former opponents have been converted, advocated: “Ray Fitzgibbon expected Seattle’s law, which took effect in September 2012, to create a nightmare for his Synergy HomeCare business, but he’s been able to afford paying a sick worker and a replacement. ‘I had used the arithmetic based on a worst-case scenario and it was scary. And in hindsight, it just hasn’t turned out like that,’ he says.”