Washington, DC—

After the introduction of mandatory paid sick days for employees in San Francisco in February 2007, percentage growth in civilian employment exceeded the average growth of surrounding counties (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, and Santa Clara). According to a new

fact sheet


the Institute for Women’s Policy Research

(IWPR), between 2007 and 2008 civilian employment grew by 4.5 percent, compared to a 0.4 percent increase in surrounding counties.


San Francisco has also fared better than surrounding counties during and after the Great Recession. San Francisco suffered smaller job losses during the recession. After the recession, between 2009 and 2010, San Francisco experienced some

job growth

at 0.6 percent, while in surrounding counties there was no measurable job growth.


“These increases in employment indicate that mandatory paid sick days are not harmful to local economies, but instead, paid sick days laws help maintain the well-being of workers and their families,” said Kevin Miller, Senior Research Associate with IWPR. “Even counties with high tech communities, such as Santa Clara, saw less job growth than San Francisco after the city’s paid sick days law was enacted.”


In accommodation and food services, a sector with typically low rates of access to paid sick days, San Francisco’s employment growth was stronger under the city’s paid sick leave ordinance (PSLO). Between 2007 and 2008, job growth in this sector was at 3.1 percent, while surrounding counties had 1.4 percent growth.


Many states and localities, as well as the U.S. Congress, have considered paid sick days legislation. In addition to San Francisco, paid sick days legislation has been approved in Connecticut and in Washington, DC.


According to a 2011 IWPR


on the impact of San Francisco’s PSLO on local businesses, a full two-thirds of businesses surveyed who are subject to the city’s law were supportive of it.


The Institute for Women’s Policy Research

(IWPR) conducts rigorous research and disseminates its findings to address the needs of women and their families, promote public dialogue, and strengthen communities and societies. IWPR is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that also works in affiliation with the women’s studies and public policy programs at The George Washington University.