Mayor Bonnie Crombie continued to rally for paid sick leave for workers in her COVID-19 press conference today, sharing what she called troubling information from Peel Public Health that at least 2,000 people in Peel have gone to work while symptomatic.
Of that number, 80 of them went into work after testing positive, knowing they were carrying the virus.
She says residents shouldn’t have to choose between staying home sick or getting a paycheck.
“Lack of paid sick leave is a glaring gap in our COVID-19 response. It’s time we tackle this issue head on,” she said, calling for the provincial and the federal government to start moving on the issue.
Crombie called the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit insufficient, saying that the payment it provides isn’t enough ($450 after tax for a one-week period) and doesn’t cover those who may need to take a day or two off to wait for the results of a COVID-19 test.
Crombie also took a moment to note the passing of a Canada Post employee following the massive outbreak at its Gateway facility in Mississauga.
While Canada Post employees do get paid sick leave, Peel’s Medical Officer of Health Dr. Lawrence Loh says paid sick leave alone is not a perfect solution for preventing workplace outbreaks.
Loh encouraged all workplaces to work on a COVID-19 safety plan, which includes inspection and rapid testing, in order to prevent outbreaks.