Paid Sick Leave Makes Good Business Sense for Albuquerque (June 6, 2017)

By Tahir Gauba

For years, opponents of measures that benefit employees and consumers have used the same argument: “It will be bad for business.” Whether it was the restaurant smoking ban in 2003, raising the minimum wage in 2012 or, now, the proposed earned sick leave ordinance, opponents have cut and pasted the same fear-mongering to intimidate the people of Albuquerque.

Enough.

The Healthy Workforce Ordinance will allow workers to earn sick leave at the rate of one hour for every 30 hours worked. Employees can use no more than five days of earned leave per year at small businesses (fewer than 40 employees) and seven days at larger businesses. Many business owners want to provide sick leave, but only if it doesn’t put their business at a competitive disadvantage. This ordinance will allow them to do just that, providing a level playing field with an easy-to-follow policy, enforced by the city of Albuquerque, just like any other ordinance that affects employers.

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