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Data from a new national survey reveal seven in 10 women working in the fast food industry say they have gone to work with symptoms of illness. Only 14 percent of women in the industry, and a mere 6 percent of women who are paid less than $9 per hour, say they have access to paid sick days.
Capping off an already historic year of progress for paid sick days, voters in Arizona and Washington approved ballot measures last week that will mean the nation will soon have seven statewide paid sick days laws. Thirty-nine jurisdictions now do – or will soon – guarantee workers the right to earn paid sick time, and efforts to protect and build upon these victories has become even more important.
This week marks the start of open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act – a historic advance that has made more affordable, comprehensive health insurance coverage available to millions more consumers. But increasing access to health coverage addresses only one barrier to health care in this country. Paid sick days access is essential too.
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