Friday, February 2, 2024 3:59 PM
There is nothing more frustrating than being sick. Not only does it interfere with your day-to-day activities, but it can disrupt your work schedule and even cost you money in medication and time off. February 5 is National Sickie Day, a day to recognize the need to take both unplanned and the occasional planned “sick day.”
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires eligible employers to provide certain workers unpaid family leave. However, many employers are not required to provide for sick days, however, they often can’t be avoided as germs make the rounds of offices, schools and homes.
According to the Economic Policy Institute
, 78 percent of private-sector workers have access to sick days. This is up from 63 percent in 2010. The number of low-wage workers with paid sick time is far lower, sitting at just 39 percent, up from 20 percent in 2010. However, the Institute noted this means 61 percent of low wage workers have no access to paid sick time.
Many Americans are reluctant or unable to take sick days, leaving them and their co-workers at risk of the spread of germs. A survey
from Statista found that of the 80 percent of adult respondents who worked or studied, almost one quarter, did not take any sick leave in the last 12 months.
Of those who did take sick days, 2 or 3 days was the most common length of time.
Many workplaces are instituting workplace well-being programs with 75 employees reporting they strongly agree, agree or slightly agree that employee well-being programs offered by their employer are one of the reasons they stay at their job. This was an increase of 70 percent from 2019.
Young people were the most likely to go to work despite being sick, according to Statista, with 47 percent of respondents aged 18 to 30 years reporting they went to work when they were sick, compared to 38 percent of those aged 46 to 60.