(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Today, Congressman Jamie Raskin joined U.S. Representative Susan Wild (PA-07) and 50 colleagues in sending a letter requesting that government-provided paid sick leave be guaranteed to frontline health care facility workers in upcoming legislative packages providing needed assistance to health care facilities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“During this crisis, our front-line health care workers are nothing short of heroes,” Wild said. “These heroes are protecting us and we need to protect them – that’s why I led a letter with more than 50 of my colleagues to ensure guaranteed paid sick leave for all affected health care workers. At this time, the last thing our health care workers should be worried about is getting sick in the line of duty and being unable to pay their bills.”
Throughout the progression of this global emergency, Wild has convened daily calls with local hospital networks and front-line health care workers to hear their stories and better understand their needs. In addition, Wild has assembled and convenes a working group of local leaders in state, and private sectors, including health care and emergency response. Concerns from these conversations resulted in her letter.
“Today, across the patchwork of healthcare providers throughout our country, we see wide discrepancies regarding paid sick leave policies for healthcare facility workers—determined by healthcare facilities’ financial situation and, indirectly, often informed by the socioeconomic status of the communities that they predominately serve,” wrote the lawmakers. “If we fail to put in place a clear, national standard of guaranteed paid sick leave for affected healthcare facility workers through the duration of the public health emergency, we are concerned that significant numbers of workers could contract COVID-19, transmit it to other personnel, and inadvertently endanger the health of our communities more broadly as a result.”
The full text of Wild’s letter is provided here.