Ford government considering a paid sick day policy for essential workers

Could help slow the spread of COVID-19 in factories and crowded warehouses

The Ford government appears to be relenting on the issue of a paid sick day policy for essential workers.

It has scoffed at the notion until now, pointing to the federal sick pay program. Health experts in the province, who say the federal program does not go far enough, believe a provincial program could help slow the spread of COVID-19 in factories and crowded warehouses.

Health Minister Christine Elliott said Tuesday that because the federal government had failed to enhance its sick-leave program in Monday’s budget, the province was now considering its options.

The apparent about-face came the same day Ontario’s Science Advisory Table recommended shutting non-essential workplaces and providing emergency sick pay for people who cannot work from home. In addition, Toronto and Peel Region have ordered businesses with five or more cases of COVID to close for ten days.

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