Coronavirus and paid sick leaves: Walmart shows the way

The American multinational retail company has announced two weeks of paid leave to employees rendered unwell due to COVID-19 symptoms.

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Walmart, has announced two weeks of paid leave, in addition to its existing leave policy, for employees who fall sick or are isolated due to coronavirus. Now, all American employers are trying to offer similar policies, for the safety of their workforces.

It has been made mandatory for employers in some Colorado industries to offer the staff some paid sick leaves, if they have flu-like symptoms, while waiting for the results of COVID-19 testing. Although this is a temporary directive, it seems the need of the hour.

The Colorado Governor Jared Polis has announced that employers in the leisure, hospitality, food service, child care, education, and home health care industries will have to allow up to four days of paid sick leave to their employees in accordance with the Colorado Health Emergency Leave with Pay Rules. These rules have come into effect and will stay so for at least 30 days, and may even be extended if the situation so demands.

In the past, research has revealed that if employees are paid to stay home while sick, the spread of the seasonal flu can be reduced to a great extent. The same logic should work in the case of coronavirus too.

In the absence of paid sick leave at a time like this, employers in the retail and hospitality sector are putting the lives of their own staff and their customers at risk.

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