, 3/24/13, 8:22 AM ET

Why paid sick leave isn’t getting passed in NYC

Four of the Democratic candidates for mayor of New York City talk about their support of paid sick days and the role of Christine Quinn, Speaker of the New York City Council, in not having the measure come up for a vote.

New York City set to approve paid sick leave bill

Updated

New York City workers won a huge victory with this week when a compromise was reached to require businesses with more than 15 employees provide paid sick days. City Council Speaker and mayoral candidate Christine Quinn has blocked paid sick leave legislation from coming to a vote for three years.

On February 9’s Up w/ Chris Hayes, Chris’ “Now We Know” segment discussed a Centers for Disease Control study which found that more than half of all norovirus outbreaks can be traced back to sick food service workers. Chris also specifically mentioned Speaker Quinn’s refusal to bring the bill that was before the City Council to the floor for a vote. While the compromise measure that Quinn agreed to on Thursday is seen as a huge win, it’s necessary to remember that Quinn was single-handedly responsible for preventing this measure from being approved before now. Quinn cited the potential economic harm the bill could do to NYC businesses.

Workers’ rights groups celebrated the new measure as an imperfect victory, but an important one nonetheless. Quinn’s rivals in the race for New York City Mayor are also unlikely to let this bill and its long road to passage go as an issue during the campaign. On March 24th’s Up w/ Chris Hayes, four mayoral candidates discussed the paid sick leave bill and sharply criticized Quinn for her inaction. Thursday’s deal did not mollify NYC Public Advocate and candidate Bill de Blasio; he spoke out against the bill and Quinn. “People aren’t dumb, they’ll figure out that their interests were not her priority,” he said at a speech in Harlem after the compromise was reached.

Quinn has been open about her connections to business interests throughout the entire debate over paid sick days. Quinn arrived an hour late to one public hearing on the topic because she had been at the Chamber of Commerce, an organization that opposed bill. The paid sick days bill must still go up for a vote in the City Council, but enough members have said they will vote yes to pass the measure.

New York City set to approve paid sick leave bill

Updated