I am going through breast cancer, so it’s fortunate for me that I have the opportunity to have paid sick days … there are times when I need to be out for surgery and times when I need to be out for chemo. Without [paid sick days], I think that would hurt my family; it would be an economic issue for us.
One summer I was sick for approximately three weeks. I developed a sinus infection and then after that I developed an allergy from the medication I was taking for the infection … I called my director and … I told her I wouldn’t be able to make it. She implied to me … that if I did not, then I would be fired from the job.
When my child was born I was fortunate to have paid maternity leave, but he was born with a lot of health problems … He underwent chemotherapy … for about a year. I ended up having to quit my job to be able to care for him. The money that I brought in right before I ended up having to quit my job is really what kept us going for the first few months.
We’re collecting stories from people across the state about their experiences juggling caregiving and work. Your story will help us show why critical workplace policies like paid sick days and family and medical leave insurance are needed. Share your experience – good, bad, or ugly.
Tell us about a time when having paid sick days or family and medical leave allowed you to keep healthy while keeping your job. Or tell us how these policies would have made a difference for you if you had them.