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Rep. Driskell Denounces Bill to Limit Paid Sick Leave for Michigan Workers

House Bill 4249 would bar municipalities from enacting paid leave policies greater than those of the state or federal government.

A new bill moving through the Michigan Legislature is receiving significant push back from Democratic lawmakers.

House Bill 4249, sponsored by state Rep. Earl Poleski, R-Jackson, would bar municipalities from enacting paid leave policies greater than those of the state or federal government.

Reps. Gretchen Driskell, D-Saline, and Henry Yanez, D-Sterling Heights, members of the Michigan House Commerce Committee, heard testimony Thursday on the bill.

Driskell said she believes the bill is meant to restrict the ability of local communities to support the health and well-being of their workforce.

"As a former mayor, I believe that local governments know best how to meet community health issues," Driskell said. "Over 1.5 million workers in this state do not have sick leave. This becomes a public health issue when sick employees come to work or have to bring their sick children to day care because they cannot afford an unpaid sick day."

If HB 4249 is passed, Yanez said residents could be forced to choose between going to work while sick, or staying home without pay.

"Michigan's middle class is the backbone of our state's economy. When families do well, everyone prospers," Yanez said. "Instead, some in Lansing would continue to attack the economic security of middle-class families. I will fight to oppose this legislation every step of the way."

KEVIN KENT March 08, 2013 at 01:15 PM
I dont get sick days and most middle class people that have to work every day to pay there bills dont recieve sick pay. Those lazy government workers need to be layed off because I am sick of hearing how many sit around on there ass and dont work at the office. If we can afford to have them sit at hime when they are sick then we dont need them at all. Fire them all and lets find some people that want to work and are not always looking for freebes. This is a example of why the government is in a mess. If they want welfare let them apply for welfare. Thats the level of service we get from government workers. Sick my ass they just want more and more.
John Baublit March 08, 2013 at 03:42 PM
Thank you Representative Diskkell for trying to defend middle class citizens from the Republican's all out assault on us. Glad you got elected instead of Mark Ouimet who would have put the hurts to us.
Laura Jones March 08, 2013 at 08:59 PM
Why is it the States business what a local municipality decides to do with their human resources? Isn't this really over reaching by the State? I think they have better and more appropriate things they are supposed to be doing in the legislature. This seems like a way to avoid doing their jobs. What a waste of time and money.
Bob Spink March 08, 2013 at 11:55 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Fed and State gov'ts have quite liberal sick leave policies. Much more liberal that the average business. I'd say this legislation makes sense as many munys don't have the guts to limit this (see Detroit).
Cheryl Hieber March 09, 2013 at 02:03 AM
Exactly what is the policy that is referred to in this article? Perhaps it's not so bad. Some municipalities need to have more restrictive policies than they do now so they stay out of financial trouble without asking for more taxpayer dollars for salaries. Sick workers or workers with sick children should be allowed to take the time off without fear of losing their job, but even corporations have limits on the number of paid sick days.
Mick March 11, 2013 at 03:31 AM
The problem here is the lack of information in this story which I would refer to as the "why." Why does Rep Poleski think this is an issue that needs to be addressed? Is there a problem? Can't someone at Patch pick up the phone and make the call? Rep Driskell however gives us more reason to show us she does not deserve her post: "she believes the bill is meant to restrict the ability of local communities to support the health and well-being of their workforce." That is a stupid thing to say. Does she actually think there are communities that are opposed to the health of employees? Then she goes on about people without sick leave. This is not about them, this is about people with sick leave. If she is so much in support of sick leave, why not introduce a bill calling for sick time pay for all people employed in Michigan? I would support that, I don't get sick pay. Lets get all the info, Patch, not just one side opposed to anything the other party does.

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