Employers no longer required to give employees paid sick leave for COVID-19

Updated: Jan. 5, 2021 at 5:57 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Millions of American workers will now have to use vacation days to get paid if they are exposed to COVID-19 and cannot work during quarantine.

A bill requiring employers to offer up to two weeks of paid Coronavirus sick leave expired on Jan. 1. It applied to public sector employers and businesses with fewer than 500 employees.

Some employers will continue to offer the extra time off to their employees who cannot work, though, because the feds have promised to offset the payroll costs with tax credits through March.

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“The lack of access to paid sick days will continue to exacerbate a global health pandemic,” Louisiana Budget Project policy advocate Davante Lewis said. “When you don’t have access to paid sick days, you’re going to push yourself through work.”

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The bill also offered parents a portion of their paychecks if they had to stay home and help their children with distance learning.

Congress could extend both policies in a new coronavirus aid package, but negotiations are some days away.

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