Poll demonstrates need for Earned Sick Time

President Obama recently made Earned Sick Time an essential part of his domestic agenda. We’ve spoken time and again on this site about how the President’s unwillingness to embrace progressive policies in the last two years led directly to the Democrats election debacle in 2014 and the defeat of Charlie Crist here in Florida. Not so coincidentally, the President enjoys his highest approval rating in two years thanks to his strong statements on a number of issues since the carnage of November 4th. A poll conducted by The Florida Institute of Reform and Empowerment (F.I.R.E) found that close to 50% of workers in the state between the age of 18-65 do not have access to sick days.

Orange County voters overwhelmingly passed sick days with over 63% of the vote in August 2014. This came after an unprecedented citizen initiative placed the question on the ballot. But bowing to political ideology as often happens in this state, the Orange County Commission and County Mayor have ignored the will of the voters. At the state level, policy makers have concocted various ways to prevent local governments from passing ordinances or legislation that benefits citizens and hurts special interests. This move began in 1999 when conservatives gained complete control of state government.  That year, the legislature attempted to stop Miami-Dade County led by Mayor Alex Penelas from suing gun manufacturers. Fortunately for the citizens of Dade County, the bill had to be pulled from the House floor thanks to the Colombine Massacre which had taken places hours before second reading.

Over the course of the last sixteen years various measures including HB 655 in 2013 which dealt with this specific issue have been pushed by the legislature and elected officials at the state level. The legislature have in time, also become experts at passing on unfunded mandates to local governments while the House and Senate attempt to thwart the will of the voters in Florida’s urban areas with various measures that protect special interests from local ordinances and initiatives .

“It’s time we tell politicians to pick a side: side with women and support Earned Sick Days or side with the corporate interests that fight family-friendly policies at every turn,” said Stephanie Porta, executive director of F.I.R.E.

The United States is the only developed western nation that doesn’t mandate Earned Sick Time. On the contrary, many of our elected leaders want to make it impossible for the hard working citizens of this state who keep our economy going to take care of their families. So much for a family friendly Florida.

 

15 comments

  1. More leftist rhetorical barbs from Kartik.

    I really think you’re so reflexively anti-business it hurts your credibility.

    We are Democrats because we seek justice on social issues. But you keep pushing issues that divide our party.

    It is difficult to sustain a modern economy without the help of business and this particular issue is bad because it is essentially giving vacation days to people on top of the already established vacation days. This hurts business and productivity not that you would understand or care about any of these concepts.

    Also it must be added that it is difficult to bring money from business into our party if we advocate policies such as this. You always like to stress how United States does things differently than other Western European countries but we have a more successful economy than those places.

    While in concept sick time sounds perfectly reasonable what he does is gives it to snow days off to people who are lazy or want to find an excuse not to work.

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    1. So wrong on so many levels I don’t have time to list everything.

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    2. SOCIAL JUSTICE DEMOCRAT FROM BROWARD · · Reply

      “We are Democrats because we seek justice on social issues. But you keep pushing issues that divide our party.”

      Uhm… I’m pretty sure this is one of the major priorities from the President of the United States (who’s a Dem, fyi).
      .
      “It is difficult to sustain a modern economy without the help of business and this particular issue is bad because it is essentially giving vacation days to people on top of the already established vacation days. This hurts business and productivity not that you would understand or care about any of these concepts.”

      So, you’re asking people to use their vacation days when they are sick and can’t work? Also, I’m pretty sure showing up to work SICK and/or being fired because you have to call out and don’t have sick days hurts business and productivity too.
      .
      “While in concept sick time sounds perfectly reasonable what he does is gives it to snow days off to people who are lazy or want to find an excuse not to work.”

      Accusing working class people and families of being lazy and full of excuses — tell me more about your support of SOCIAL justice? smh

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    3. So basically adopting your premise we never would have repealed child labor laws in the 1910s because it “hurt business and efficiency”, never would have broken up trusts at the same time, never would have had a “New Deal” in the 1930s because “businesses deserve protections”, never would have put restrictions on banks after the Great Depression, never would have passed Civil Rights laws because they infringe upon business and “hiring who you want,” and never would have passed family and medical leave in 1993 because it “hurt business and productivity.”

      This is very much a similar issue that 30-40 years from now people will be saying “I cannot believe people fought sick days in the 2010’s, how backward, how wrong.”

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  2. If paid sick leave is “leftist,” then sign me up for the Leftist Party.

    Broward, you are obviously a GOP operative who can’t even fake being a Democrat on a blog. Give it up.

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  3. Broward Voter · · Reply

    A lot of democrats don’t believe in putting business out of business in order to achieve something. That’s why the radical health care proposals were eventually scaled back. We need Medicaid reform but not unfounded mandates. It’s ironic Kartik complains about unfunded mandates and then advocates a MASSIVE one here.

    These sorts of quixotic issues are the speciality of this website. I guess it’s important for lefties to have a statewide voice and platform in this matters I guess. But this won’t help democrats raise money or win elections.

    I would also point out that Stephanie Porta who is quoted here is Kartik’s BFF and close political ally so anything she says gets printed here without any attempt by the author to challenge her the way he would conservative democrats like his hit pieces against Jared Moskowitz and Katie Edwards both of whom are good democrats. So this isn’t exactly an objective article. But I suppose progressives need garbage like this to be spewed to seem relevant. The people who matter in Tallahassee could care less about this.

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    1. Are you seriously proposing the government compensate business for sick time if we were able to achieve implementation? Aren’t the profits of big businesses make more than enough to offset this, especially given wage stagnation in the state? This legislature has done absolutely nothing to create good jobs in the state in 18 years!

      I also find it interesting that the Chamber of Commerce can control a blog in the state and maybe the Koch brothers also but heaven forbid progressives do the same.

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    2. Billy Manes · · Reply

      Um, first of all, Stephanie Porta is my best friend and bridesmaid. Second, your anonymous true colors are shining through. More sick people equals better business! You’re a winner.

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    3. If a “conservative democrat” doesn’t support the economic security and public health benefits of earned sick time, what then does a “conservative democrat” stand for? These are fundamental issues of fairness and “social contract” operation that poll well above 70% nearly any way you word it.

      The sad fact is that far too many opportunists have staked out the “conservative democrat” ground in order to profit from being the Liebermans of the party — you know, the ones who have to be given stuff to get their support. Yuck.

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  4. Broward Operative · · Reply

    Let me wade into this debate. Kartik the problem is your opinions matter, what you write here matters. Every active Democrat in the state reads this blog.

    At times you write responsible analytical pieces using your talent for crunching numbers, knowledge of history and analyzing political trends. You are very good at that.

    The problem is when you throw bombs, write stories that are not balanced and create an atmosphere which makes it difficult for Democrats who want to be more pragmatic and reasonable to operate because this blog will chop their heads off the second the deviate from the orthodoxy you promote. Then everyone who reads this reacts to your tired old denunciations about “Tallahassee insiders” “Special Interest driven lobbyists” and “transactional Broward County Democrats.” It really gets quite old but it’s sort of obvious that this website can be used activate and incite angry progressives throughout the state at the drop of a hat.

    The publications you take veiled swipes at here at least attempt to balance their articles. Whether it is your BFF Stephanie Porta or another close political ally or associate including Susan Smith who is above here in the comments you never attempt to push back against what these self-proclaimed progressive leaders say. This is the EXACT opposite of what you do with people like Rep. Moskowitz, Rep. Edwards, Sen. Soto, Sen. Ring and others who you will mock statements by. It is well-known in political circles both in Broward and Tallahassee that one House member was so scared of what you would write going forward after killing this person in one article they changed a vote on an important education issue and then started giving speeches supporting your position.

    Instead of informing the public you create a lynch mob mentality to go after Democrats who stray from your orthodoxy. It’s interesting because your wife is very reasoned on these issues but obviously you guys have your own issues at home you have to deal with.

    It really is very tiring to read articles like this. Such a shame because you do have talent and are one the smartest guys in the room. But book smart is not street smart.

    The world goes on without those people incited by this blog to make the Democratic Party so unpalatable to voters that we cannot compete. What happened in this election should have served as a warning, but almost instantly Kartik started throwing out the narrative about how the Democrats lost because we were too moderate which is THE TOTAL OPPOSITE OF THE ESTABLISHED NARRATIVE FROM MORE INFORMED EXPERTS THAN YOU.

    I could go on and on but will quit now.

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    1. Unlike those sites that even imply being balanced by using the term “news” we openly identify as a PROGRESSIVE/LIBERAL site. I am proud of the impact we have on the political and legislative process. That was the point of this site. This isn’t a “news” site that under the cloak of objectivity pushes an ideological agenda for people who fund the site. This is a site that I fund with my own money and time and the extensive time and effort of our writers like Katy Burnett. As for my “political allies” like Susan, Stephanie and many others I proudly stand with them on so many issues of importance to Floridians.

      FYI- Democrats lost because they didn’t stand for anything. You obviously didn’t read this article which indicates Obama’s approval rating has shot up since he began standing strong on PROGRESSIVE ideas and principles.

      Thanks for reading!

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    2. So basically adopting your premise we never would have repealed child labor laws in the 1910s because it “hurt business and efficiency”, never would have broken up trusts at the same time, never would have had a “New Deal” in the 1930s because “businesses deserve protections”, never would have put restrictions on banks after the Great Depression, never would have passed Civil Rights laws because they infringe upon business and “hiring who you want,” and never would have passed family and medical leave in 1993 because it “hurt business and productivity.”

      This is very much a similar issue that 30-40 years from now people will be saying “I cannot believe people fought sick days in the 2010’s, how backward, how wrong.”

      Like

  5. I think a serious issue is why so many moderate democrats and political consultants feel the need to insult liberals constantly?

    To me that’s a takeaway from this thread.

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  6. Jonathan · · Reply

    Bottom line is this – without corporate partnerships and the goodwill of those who donate money the Democrats cannot win elections. That’s why things like this while in theory are compassionate and smart are actually quite dangerous politically.

    Obama does not care as he does not have to run for reelection and would probably rather have a Republican win than Hillary. She needs to be smart about this and balance her position.

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  7. Jonathan, Hillary has already made her decision on paid sick days and she is out in front and on the right side of history..and she has been for a while. Many businesses provide sick time, many don’t. Its time there is fair playing field for all. If a business cant stay in business because they offer a few sick days here and there, then they probably weren’t going to stay in business for much longer as it is. In fact, in every single place that has passed paid sick days, there has been an expansion of the economy far beyond the neighboring communities without it. Why? Because when working class folks have a few extra dollars they spend it in their local businesses–its not going into off shore bank accounts like the owners of Disney’s extra profits. Paid sick days are good for OUR economy and there is no data that disputes that.

    Like

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