“It is in the best interests of our nation, and especially our families, to ensure American workers have access to paid sick days.” – Rep. DeLauro
In the United States job protected paid sick leave is not guaranteed for employees by law. As a result this benefit is unequally distributed across employees both in terms of access to leave and the extent of the coverage. Current public policies do not adequately support workers striving to balance the obligations of their personal and professional lives. This work undertakes a gender and socio-economic impact analysis which focuses on how institutional arrangements regarding paid sick leave affect different segments of the population. The overwhelming result is that low-wage employees and their children are disadvantaged by their lack of access to paid sick leave and this serves to reinforce their lower class status. This report seeks to engage all citizens by arguing that job-protected paid sick leave is one of many mechanisms that can help strengthen the fabric of American society by promoting human flourishing and helping the poor climb into the middle class. Therefore, government should play a role in guaranteeing this employee protection.