Promoting policy solutions that improve job quality is an essential part of CLASP's agenda to reduce poverty, support families, reward effort and expand opportunity. CLASP's advocacy on work/life and job quality concentrates on paid leave, predictable and responsive schedules, and advancement opportunities.

Job Scheduling and Responsive Workplaces

CLASP promotes responsive workplaces through policies and practices such as part-time equity, flexible scheduling, advance notification of schedules, guaranteed minimum hours, teleworking options, consistent and predictable hours of work, and more. Read more>>

Sick Days and Family Medical Leave 

CLASP advocates for state and federal policies that prevent workers from being denied time to tend to their own or a family member's health, or care for a new child. These policies include earned sick days, paid family and medical leave insurance, and expansions of the Family Medical Leave Act.
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Business Leadership and Job Quality 

CLASP engages with progressive business associations and directly with business owners to promote the business case for improved job quality policies.  Read more>>

Watch employer interviews about paid leave>>

Sep 10, 2015  |  PERMALINK »

President Celebrates Labor Day by Extending Paid Sick Days to Government Contractors

By Zoe Ziliak Michel 

Workers were given another reason to celebrate Labor Day this year, as President Obama chose that day to sign an executive order requiring federal contractors to provide their employees with one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked, up to seven paid sick days per year. The White House estimates that this executive order, which takes effect in 2017, will give about 300,000 additional workers access to paid sick days. Workers will have the right to use those sick days not only to convalesce when they fall ill themselves, but also to care for a sick relative or seek safety in cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

While extending paid sick days benefits to 300,000 new contractors is great news, this executive order underscores the need for all workers to be guaranteed paid sick days through  a national law – the Healthy Families Act (HFA). An estimated 43 million American workers lack access to paid time off to care for themselves or sick family members. The HFA would give all workers at businesses with at least 15 employees the right to earn up to seven days of paid sick time per year, while those at smaller businesses would earn up to seven days of unpaid (but still job-protected) sick time annually.

Our nation’s workers need paid sick days to protect the health of their own families and their communities. Parents without paid sick days are likely to send their kids to school sick, endangering the health of classmates and teachers. In contrast, those with paid leave are more likely to attend prenatal and well-child medical visits, get flu shots, and pursue other preventive care for themselves and their children. And employers who already have paid sick days policies state that offering paid sick days doesn’t hurt their bottom line; in fact, it reduces turnover, saving them money on hiring and training.

The president stressed the need for a federal paid sick days law in his Labor Day speech announcing the executive order. “I’m calling on Congress [to] take a cue from the rest of the world…Pass a national policy for paid sick days as well,” he urged, adding, “It’ll be good for business.”

On Labor Day, American workers celebrated the workplace rights that unions have fought for and won. Yet there are still more protections we need to secure. It’s time for job-protected paid sick days for all American workers. It’s time for the Healthy Families Act.

Paid Sick Days

As part of its work life and job quality work, CLASP advocates for state and federal paid sick days policies that will allow more workers to take time off when they need to tend to their own or a family member's health. READ MORE »
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