Sick Leave…optional or mandatory

As a job seeker, how much do you weigh employer paid benefits?  Take sick leave; is this a required benefit? 

When I was younger, I worked for a Grocery Store Chain in Seattle.  We were a union shop.  Our wages and health benefits were great, but our sick leave policy was terrible.  To collect on any sick leave, you had to be off work 3 consecutive days then provide a doctor’s note explaining your illness, before you would receive sick leave.

Where my wife works now, they bank their sick leave and get a percentage of that banked amount when leaving the company. Nice in theory, but if you have someone using little or no sick leave for a number of years, the cost of cashing out the individual could make the company ill.

An Ohio Newspaper ran this article today about legislation that would make sick leave a ‘mandatory’ benefit for all companies with 25+ employees. Even part-timers would be eligible under this legislation.

I think sick leave is a good thing…if used for the right purpose. When it’s used to just give someone a day off, it costs the employer and the employees who are at work that day. Sick leave is an added cost for employers. I believe it is a great benefit, but I dont’ think it should be mandatory.

What do you think? – Ron

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