New York Mayor Proposes Paid Personal Time Measure

Mayor Bill de Blasio said he will pursue local legislation that would require private employers with five or more employees to offer 10 annual days of paid personal time, allowing employees to take paid time off for any purpose.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has proposed that it become the first city in the nation to mandate paid personal time for workers. Saying more than 500,000 full- and part-time employees in New York City currently have no paid time off, de Blasio said he will pursue local legislation that would require private employers with five or more employees to offer 10 annual days of paid personal time, allowing employees to take paid time off for any purpose, including vacation, religious observances, bereavement, and time with family.

"Workers across the nation have been working too hard without enough time to rest and recharge or enough time for family and important life events. Every other major nation recognizes the necessity of paid personal time. We as a country must get there, and New York City will lead the way," he said. "To be the fairest big city in America, New Yorkers can't be forced to choose between bringing home a paycheck and taking time off to just disconnect or spend time with loved ones – that choice ends with paid personal time. I look forward to working with Council Speaker Corey Johnson and the rest of City Council on this important piece of legislation."

"Here in United States, we have fewer days off than anywhere else in the world – time that increases productivity and improves mental and physical health," said Department of Consumer Affairs Commissioner Lorelei Salas. "Here in New York City, we are one of the leading jurisdictions in creating the right to sick leave, which we then expanded last year to broaden the definition of family and to add safe leave for victims of domestic and sexual abuse. Today we yet again pave the path towards a new generation of workers' rights that meet the needs and realities of today's workforce with the right to paid time off – a win-win for workers, employers, and our economy."

"There will be questions we'll need to work out, but all full-time employees deserve a basic minimum of paid time off," said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. "Too often, employment becomes a race to the bottom, where employers feel they can't do the right thing while still competing. It's government's job to step in, establish standards, and stop the downward spiral -- with overtime standards, minimum wage laws, safety laws, paid sick days, and now, a minimum of personal days."

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