Christine Stuart photo

An apple a day doesn’t always keep the doctor away, but it’s helping the Working Families Party and unions get their message across to lawmakers about the paid sick days bill.

Urania Petit, a Working Families Party member, said 40 percent of workers in the state do not receive a single paid sick day.

If a sick worker isn’t given one day to recover their condition may get worse and that one day may turn into three months, Petit said Wednesday.

Petit and the group passed out apple grams Wednesday to encourage lawmakers to support legislation that would allow workers to earn one hour of sick time for every 40 hours worked.

Sen. Edith Prague, D-Columbia, said she was delighted to have the apple and support the bill. She said last year the bill passed the Senate, but died on the House calendar.

“Everybody deserves to have paid sick days,” Prague said. “It’s the right thing to do.”

The Office of Fiscal Analysis estimated that there are 9,200 employers in the state and approximately 1.3 million employees. The nonpartisan office financial office estimated the bill will cost the state approximately $162,500 in fiscal year 2009 because the number of complaints handled by the Department of Labor will increase.

Click here to read the entire analysis.

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