An effort in the legislature would vastly expand paid sick leave in Connecticut, despite how the mandate has fallen short on its promises—and despite how its old approach eliminates job creators’ flexibility to meet the needs of their workforce.

Employers need and value skilled employees—so most companies are working hard to accommodate and keep them.

Before the paid sick leave mandate took effect, 88.5% of Connecticut businesses responding to a study said they already offered some form of paid sick leave.

Now more than ever, businesses are organically developing more flexible work schedules and employee leave policies in order to attract top talent.

But one-size-fits-all workplace mandates, like the paid sick leave law, are tired approaches that no longer work for businesses in the modern economy—and transmit a decidedly noncompetitive message about Connecticut. 

Passage of paid sick leave was seen by some to be a landmark event, but since then, only two other states have followed suit.

Lawmakers should question why, if this is good policymaking, our competitor states are not rushing in to join us.

Now, a bill in the Labor Committee would vastly expand paid sick leave in Connecticut. 

Under HB 6784, paid sick leave would expand to include nonmanufacturing businesses with 10 or more employees, all hourly worker job titles, and temporary workers. It would allow employees to use sick time to care for extended family members, and increases (from five to seven, days of sick leave that can be accumulated. 

Currently, the law requires nonmanufacturers with a workforce of greater than 50 or more employees to provide up to five days of paid sick leave to hourly workers in more than 60 job titles.

The vast majority of paid sick leave studies show that despite promises, having paid sick leave did not reduce employee turnover nor result in fewer instances of employees coming to work sick. 

Policymakers in other states have probably done their homework on studies about paid sick leave--conducted by pro-mandate organizations—that show the laws have added to employers’ costs but not markedly improved health in the workplace.

The mandate has, however, resulted in businesses having to increase their prices, reduce other employee benefits, and take other steps to offset the increased costs of the sick leave mandate and modify their workplace policies in order to comply.   

Connecticut businesses can no longer afford these costly mandates, especially when they haven't resulted in any health benefits for employers or employees alike. 

For more information, contact CBIA’s Eric Gjede at 860.244.1931 | eric.gjede@cbia.com | @egjede