A batch of City Council hopefuls have signed letters such as the one below in favor of paid sick days legislation, marking one more group adding its voice to the chorus of those who want to see the worker-friendly proposal get to the Council floor.
"Income inequality in New York City is getting worse and poverty is on the rise. I'm running for City Council because I think we can do much more to improve the lives of working class New Yorkers," said Jesus Gonzalez, one of the signatories who brings the campaigns's council-candidate backers to 25 in a push to pressure Council Speaker (and likely 2013 mayoral hopeful) Christine Quinn... (Critics, as I reported in January and since, say the bill would harshly burden struggling small business owners).
Open letter to New York’s working families:
As a candidate for New York City Council, I'm firmly committed to policies like paid sick days that will support working families, strengthen the economy and build a stronger, healthier city for all of us. It's unconscionable that the paid sick days bill -- which has earned the support of a super-majority of the City Council and 3 in 4 city voters -- has failed to come to the floor for a vote.
More than a million New Yorkers lack paid sick days at their jobs. For those workers, a personal or family illness can mean losing much needed pay or even losing a job. Especially in today's difficult economy, that's not right; no one should be forced to choose between their family's health and their family's economic stability.
Workers losing jobs because they or their children get sick is not a winning economic model for our city.
Pushing working families into debt because they can't take the time they need to recover from illness is not a winning economic model for our city.
Forcing families to rely on emergency rooms because they can't take time off to go to the doctor for preventative treatment is not a winning economic model for our city.
A paid sick days policy that covers all workers would be a major step forward for our city. It would protect the economic security of working class families and protect the economy. Short of that ideal, the least that the current City Council could do is bring the revised paid sick days bill to a vote and pass it.
Twenty-three candidates signed the letter published here: Yetta Kurland, Mark Thompson, Benjamin Kallos, Debra Cooper, Mel Wymore, Helen Rosenthal, Marc Landis, Mark Levine, Cheryl Pahaham, Mark Otto, John Duane, Andy King, Ocynthia Williams, Raquel Batista, Kirsten Foy, Ernest Flowers, Carlos Sierra, Donovan Richards, Jacques Leandre, Antonio Reynoso, Ede Fox, Jesus Gonzalez, Mercedes Narcissre. Two candidates, Costa Constantinides and Corey Johnson, signed separate personal letters with their own wording.