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Health problem: workers lack earned sick days

Three-fourths of food workers don't get paid sick days

Microscopic image of a flu virus
Microscopic image of a flu virus

When you catch a cold or the flu, you often suspect that you got it in a restaurant. In San Diego, you certainly may have. A new study by the Institute for Women's Policy Research finds that 76 percent of local employees working in food services lack any earned sick days. Because these workers generally have low pay, many go to work sick.

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The study indicates that 44 percent of all private-sector workers in the county lack access to sick pay and half of the workers in the hotel industry do. The study, using data from the 2011 American Community Survey and the 2010–2011 National Health Interview Survey, indicates that 55 percent of Hispanics in the county don't get paid sick days, compared with 44 percent for white, non-Hispanic workers.

The occupations with the worst record are farming, fishing, and forestry, for which 87 percent don't get paid sick days off. In fourth place is personal care and service organizations, with 74 percent. These people often work with children. The best occupation is computer and mathematical occupations, in which only 16 percent lack paid sick leave.

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Microscopic image of a flu virus
Microscopic image of a flu virus

When you catch a cold or the flu, you often suspect that you got it in a restaurant. In San Diego, you certainly may have. A new study by the Institute for Women's Policy Research finds that 76 percent of local employees working in food services lack any earned sick days. Because these workers generally have low pay, many go to work sick.

Sponsored
Sponsored

The study indicates that 44 percent of all private-sector workers in the county lack access to sick pay and half of the workers in the hotel industry do. The study, using data from the 2011 American Community Survey and the 2010–2011 National Health Interview Survey, indicates that 55 percent of Hispanics in the county don't get paid sick days, compared with 44 percent for white, non-Hispanic workers.

The occupations with the worst record are farming, fishing, and forestry, for which 87 percent don't get paid sick days off. In fourth place is personal care and service organizations, with 74 percent. These people often work with children. The best occupation is computer and mathematical occupations, in which only 16 percent lack paid sick leave.

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5

Most of those low paid workers also lack health coverage as well which means they are unlikely to get treatment for their illness. If they are covered it is most likely thru Medical. Yet another form of corporate welfare.

Feb. 26, 2014

Dennis: Yes, many low paid workers lack health coverage. This is one of the things Obamacare was meant to address. I assume you meant Medicaid and not Medical. Yes, I think a lot of these people are on Medicaid. Best, Don Bauder

Feb. 26, 2014

MediCal is the Ca. version of Medicaid funded by both the Feds and the State.

Feb. 27, 2014

Dennis: If you had spelled it Medi-Cal I wouldn't have made such a dumb mistake. My error. Best, Don Bauder

Feb. 27, 2014

FOUR COUNCILMEMBERS BACK MEASURE FOR EARNED SICK DAYS. Today (March 12), Council President Todd Gloria, Council President Pro Tem Sherri Lightner, and Councilmembers Marti Emerald and Myrtle Cole said they will bring a comprehensive measure in favor of earned sick days and an increase in the minimum wage to the ballot box in November. Best, Don Bauder

March 12, 2014

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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