Nutter Vetoes Paid Sick Leave—Again
Mayor Michael Nutter vetoed the paid sick leave bill this morning, claiming it would hurt “the very workers this bill is intended to help” via job cuts from local businesses who can’t pay for it. The decision is not a surprise, but a disappointment for the Philadelphia Coalition for Healthy Families and Workplaces, a collective of community organizing groups and affiliates who’d been pushing for this bill since 2011, the first time Nutter vetoed a paid sick leave bill.
PCHFW released a series of statements from local community members upon Nutter’s veto. One of which, from Dewetta Logan, owner of the Smart Beginnings Early Learning Center in West Philadelphia, called Nutter’s veto “a big mistake,” noting “The City Council should listen to local small business owners instead of corporate lobbyists and do what’s right for our economy by overriding the Mayor’s veto.”
If City Council wants to override the decision, they have until next week to do so. Councilman Bill Greenlee’s bill originally got 11 votes in its passage. Twelve are required for an override.
PW spoke to Marianne Bellesorte of Pathways PA yesterday, which lobbied for the bill. She expected today’s decision by the mayor.
“We will, of course, talk to all the Councilmembers who voted no on the bill back on March 14th and talk to them about fighting for Philly families, which we really hoped the mayor would do, as well,” she said. “We’d like to be in a position to do a veto override by April 11th.”
Greenee told CBS of a potential override: “We’re not going to run it today, but we’re still working, and we’re still hopeful that we can get it done. Because — you’ve heard me say many times — I think it’s the right thing to do.”
Update: The Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a national outlet, has sent out an email asking supporters to call Councilmen Kenney, Squilla and Dennis O’Brien regarding a potential override of the bill. “Paid sick days are about justice. Families need to know that one flu won’t cost them their jobs. New York City Council just announced its own plans to pass paid sick days, because it’s a policy that makes sense,” Amanda Johnson, Anton Medvedev, “and the PCCC team” write by email. “Right now, 4 in 10 people who work in Philadelphia cannot earn a single sick day. That number jumps to 9 in 10 when it comes to the people who make and serve our food. It just isn’t right.”
Follow Randy on Twitter: @RandyLoBasso