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>>

May 26, 2017  |  PERMALINK »

Maryland Governor Vetoes Earned Sick Time Bill

By Zoe Ziliak Michel

After Maryland legislators passed the Healthy Working Families Act in both chambers earlier this year, Governor Larry Hogan vetoed the bill yesterday, preventing 750,000 Maryland workers from gaining the right to earn paid sick time. Had Hogan signed the bill, workers would have gotten this protection on January 1. Instead, the legislature will now have to mount a veto override effort in January 2018.

Hogan’s veto runs contrary to both the will of the state’s legislators, and that of the public and employers. A University of Maryland-Washington Post poll found that 84 percent of Marylanders support giving workers at businesses with at least 15 employees paid sick time, as the Healthy Working Families Act would ensure. And over 50 Maryland business owners have signed on in support of the act through the Working Matters Coalition, recognizing that paid sick time improves health and morale in their businesses. Working Matters Coalition Director Liz Richards stated, “By vetoing the Healthy Working Families Act, Governor Hogan has turned his back on 750,000 working Marylanders facing impossible choices between their job and their family because they are not afforded the basic dignity of being able to take a day off when they're sick. Governor Hogan's decision protects an indefensible status quo and prevents Maryland families, businesses, and communities from reaping the benefits of this bill as soon as possible.”

Luckily, the governor’s veto does not close the door on paid sick days for Maryland workers. Both chambers of the legislature passed the bill with veto-proof majorities. Thus, Maryland workers will likely still gain the right to care for themselves and their families without losing a day’s pay if, as anticipated, the legislature overturns the veto in the 2018 legislative session. Specifically, the law will allow workers at businesses with at least 15 employees to earn one hour of paid, job-protected sick time for every 30 hours worked, with a cap of 5 days (40 hours) earned per year. The leave can also be used as “safe time” to seek services necessary due to domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking. Employees of smaller businesses will earn job-protected sick and safe time as well, though it may be unpaid.

Ample evidence shows that paid sick time improves public health, increases access to preventive care—and is good for businesses’ bottom line.  Governor Hogan’s veto of the Healthy Working Families Act runs contrary to the interests of many Maryland constituencies—and defies common sense. Seven other states and over two dozen cities and counties have already recognized the benefits of guaranteeing paid sick time for their residents. Later this year, Rhode Island may pass similar legislation. For now, though, too many Maryland workers will still have to choose between their health and their paycheck.

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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