Big City mayors seek action on paid sick leave

58% of Canadian workers don't have access to paid sick leave through their employers

Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman says the issue of paid sick leave has become enormous as we work through the COVID pandemic.

An estimated 58 per cent of Canadian workers don’t have access to paid sick leave through their employers. That number rises to 70 per cent among people making less thanĀ $25,000 a year.

Ontario has passed legislation that states you cannot be fired for taking time off when you’re sick, and the federal government offers $450 per week in sick benefits.

“There are still far too many people who, in order to have more than 450 bucks a week to live on for their family or otherwise, are stuck with that choice of ‘Do I still go to work or not?'” says Lehman.

And he notes the federal money only lasts ten days, which may be helpful for those who get over COVID in a week, but for some, the symptoms can last for months.

Lehman says the issue will be raised at today’s (Friday’s) meeting of the Large Urban Mayors Caucus of Ontario.

“Nobody, absolutely nobody, should have to go to work if they’re showing symptoms of COVID.”

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