Prince George’s County Endorses Paid Sick Leave, but only on state level

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Here’s a little something I’ve been working on at the Sentinel. Over the last three months, many county citizens have been at the doors of the Prince George’s County Administration building asking looking for paid sick leave for non-governmental and private sector employees.

In most cases, employees who work full-time in private industries have some sort of paid sick leave system. However, employees working in the restaurant business and other food chain employees don’t have it. This legislation would allow all employees to earn up to 56 hours of paid sick leave per year.

“As a small owner and longtime advocate for women throughout Prince George’s County, it’s inexcusable to think that in 2015 any working woman or family would have to choose between her sick child and her job,” Jones said.

–Jennifer Jones, president of HOCS strategic business solutions

All nine of Prince George’s County’s County Council members agree that there needs to be some paid sick leave system in place. However, some believe it would put Prince George’s County at a disadvantage when it comes to attracting business owners in the county.

Council Chairman Mel Franklin said there needs to be some sort of statewide legislation on this issue before Prince George’s County is forced to get out in front of the situation and take things on by themselves.

“We are in the process of what I think is an economic development boom. We know that our county residents have long believed we should provide more amenities, more job opportunities in the county, and more economic opportunity so folks don’t have to take their dollars to other jurisdictions,” Franklin said. “Doing a statewide paid sick leave requirement would have the benefit of having us on the same level playing field as every jurisdiction in Maryland.”

Last week the council discussed the two bills to see if they could move out of committee and be passed into law, but there were too many variables to consider in such a short time period before the council moves on to the next legislative year.

Because of that, the bill granting paid sick leave to workers in the county will not be discussed until January when the next legislative year begins.

What do you all think? Is it dangerous to grant workers paid sick leave without some sort of state legislation in place or should the council have passed the bill? Let me know in the comment section. Thanks for reading.

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Hi! I'm glad you're here. My name is Michael Sykes, II, if you couldn't tell by now, and I'm a media professional.
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