What’s going on:
In 2024, the state of Illinois could join Maine and Nevada as only the third state to mandate paid leave for all its workers.
If Gov. J.B. Pritzker signs off on the Paid Leave for All Workers Act, employees could earn up to 40 hours of paid leave — one for every 40 hours worked, without having to give a reason for leave.
This type of mandate is a relative rarity in the U.S.; this mandate would also protect workers from potential employer retaliation.
Why it matters:
Fourteen states, including Washington D.C., already have laws in place to ensure that employers offer paid sick leave to their employees, but they are only allowed to use it for health-related issues.
Setting Illinois’ new legislation apart, workers won’t need to explain the cause of their absence as long as they follow their employer’s reasonable notification guidelines. This law covers almost all employees and does not distinguish between small and large businesses.
Lifeguards, federal workers, and university students working temporary, non-full-time jobs will be exempt from this.
How it’ll impact the future:
If this new act comes to fruition in Illinois, and if it seems to be a success, other states might follow suit.
Workplace norms have been seriously challenged since the pandemic made its mark, and people are starting to want new and improved benefits. Work-life balance is becoming more of a priority to workers across America, and this new legislation could improve the lives of many.