Workers in Maryland would be guaranteed seven paid sick days a year under a introduced Thursday in Annapolis, eliminating what advocates say is an "impossible choice" that thousands of mostly low-wage employees are forced to make between preserving their health or their jobs.
"Folks are now in a place where they have to make these impossible choices," said Del. John A. Olszewski Jr., a Baltimore County Democrat and sponsor, noting that for many people, three unpaid sick days can equal a month's worth of groceries.
But the Earned Sick and Safe Time Act — to be cross-filed in the Senate and the House of Delegates — will likely face stiff opposition from business interests, which argue that the measure would hurt employers with fewer than 50 workers. Under the bill, workers would earn one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked.