The DMI Injustice Index: Can You Afford to Get Sick?

Percentage of employees without paid sick leave who say they cannot afford to take unpaid time off work when they become ill: 58
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From the Drum Major Institute's 2008 Injustice Index on Paid Sick Leave:

Rank of “stay home when you are sick” on the list of Centers for Disease Control recommendations for preventing the flu: 2

Proportion of employees without paid sick leave who worry that taking time off when they are sick would jeopardize their job: 1 in 3

Percentage of employees without paid sick leave who say they cannot afford to take unpaid time off work when they become ill: 58

Number of countries that require employers to provide a week or more of paid sick leave annually: 136

Number of days of paid sick leave guaranteed by the United States: 0

Number of private sector employees in the U.S. without a single paid sick day at work: 46 million

Percentage of Americans who agree that employers should be required to provide paid sick days, according to a 2007 poll: 80

Proportion of U.S. employees who say they have contracted the flu virus from a sick co-worker: 3 in 10

Year in which Pope Gregory the Great urged his people to say "may God bless you" when a person sneezed to protect the blessed person from death by the bubonic plague: 580 CE

Year in which talk radio host Glenn Beck used Senator Barack Obama’s support for paid sick leave as evidence that “Democrats are communist”: 2008

Average lost productivity to businesses per employee per year when employees show up to work despite suffering from a respiratory infection: $133.84

Cost of one 18.6 oz. can of Campbell’s Chunky Classic Chicken Noodle Soup from FreshDirect, an online grocer: $2.69

Maximum number of hours the flu virus remains alive on an inanimate surface like a door knob, office desk or telephone: 8

Percentage of food and accommodation workers who don’t have paid sick leave: 86

Percentage of New York City restaurant workers who say they had gone to work sick: 52

Maximum number of points off a New York City Health Department restaurant inspection for the presence of a worker who “prepares food or handles utensil when ill with a disease transmissible by food:” 28

Number of points it takes to fail an inspection: 28

Number of well-baby check-ups the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends for healthy children during the first year of life: 7

Number of workers who do not have paid leave to care for sick children or bring them to the doctor: 86 million

Odds that a woman living in poverty loses pay when she stays home from work to care for a sick child: 3 in 4

Proportion of the adult U.S. population who currently have some caregiving responsibilities for another adult, such as a disabled or elderly relative: 1 in 5

Chances that such caregivers will need to leave work early, arrive to work late or miss work to provide care: 3/5

Projected percentage increase in the number of U.S. residents who will be over age 65 – and may be more likely to require care—by 2030: 105.7

Original air date of the Cosby Show episode when Dr. Cliff Huxtable stayed home from work to take care of sick daughter Rudy: 12/13/1984

Date that San Francisco became the first place in the U.S. to require employers to provide all employees with paid sick leave: 2/5/2007

Date of the Drum Major Institute’s next Marketplace of Ideas event, on what New York and the country can learn from San Francisco’s paid sick leave policy: 5/28/08

For more on paid sick leave, check out the liveblog of the Marketplace of Ideas event and DMI's YouTube channel, which has clips from the event.

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