DMI Blog

Karin Dryhurst

Mandates? Harumph!

Mandate has become a favorite dirty word for metro editorial boards. As in: Sick Days? Not Another Mandate (emphasis mine).

I can almost hear them stomping their feet over at the Hartford Courant:

The last thing businesses in Connecticut need during this steep economic downturn is another expensive mandate.

After all, some businesses already give workers paid sick days on their own.

They don't need government to tell them what to do on that score.

Too bad 40 percent of Connecticut workers get not a one sick day each year.

The Des Moines Register tries to seem a bit more empathetic, leading with the fact that one third of Iowans lack paid sick leave. But then they get with the pleading. The paper says "now is not the time to place additional mandates on businesses." Instead, businesses should get with the Good Samaritan and volunteer to offer paid sick days to workers. It's the right thing to do!

That's a good plan. But wait, if businesses providing paid sick days would be such a jobs killer, why would any of them volunteer?

But the plan is not a jobs killer. Though no states have passed paid sick leave, a handful of cities have and their business communities managed to get by. In fact, the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, who originally fought the dreaded mandate in that city, said later that "we really have not heard much about it being a major issue for a lot of businesses." Oh.

Maybe Hartford and Des Moines can follow suit.

Karin Dryhurst: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 5:31 PM, Feb 25, 2010 in Cities
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