I contracted pink eye (conjunctivitis) overnight, which is highly contagious. I called everyone to try to switch my shift, but there was nobody who could cover for me that day. I called my manager and she told me there was nothing she could do, that I had to come in to work.
I've been in the restaurant industry for about 9 years. I never really thought about paid sick days, or the need of it until I came to DC about 3 years ago. I found a job at a restaurant, and about a month into working there I got sick.
I still had to go to work even though I sick, and had it not been for my co-workers who begged our employer to let me go home so they wouldn’t get sick, I would have kept working.
I’ve been working at a bar for a year and a half. As an hourly employee, I am entitled to paid sick days, but I had no idea until Restaurant Opportunities Center United told me about it.
I was forced to work and finish my shift even though I couldn’t even walk. I couldn’t work the next day, and I had to go to the hospital. This kind of thing happens all the time and having paid sick days would definitely help.
Indicators of poverty in Washington, DC
Percentage of people living in poverty
Percentage of low-income people (200% of poverty or below)