The End of Paid Sick Leave?

The corporate front group known as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is promoting legislation that would enable state lawmakers to override municipal laws that require paid sick leave.

The anti-paid sick leave campaign is in response to recent legislation that grants paid sick leave for workers at certain employers. Lawmakers in Seattle, Philadelphia and Denver recently approved paid sick leave ordinances while Connecticut became the first state with a state-wide requirement.

ALEC is promoting Wisconsin’s 2011 Senate Bill 23 as an example of legislation that can be used to override other state’s sick leave laws.

In 2008, Milwaukee, WI became the third city in America to guarantee workers paid sick leave, joining Washington, D.C. and San Francisco. Despite widespread public support for the law, Republicans in the Wisconsin state legislature passed a bill preempting the city’s law and ensuring that no jurisdiction within the state of Wisconsin is allowed to decide it wants to mandate paid sick days.

In addition to promoting legislation to outlaw paid sick leave, ALEC is aggressively promoting state laws to restrict, limit and otherwise suppress voting rights among groups and individuals that might be inclined to vote for progressive causes and candidates.