In a 4-3 decision on Wednesday, Tthe Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld a 2015 City of Pittsburgh ordinance that requires employers to provide paid sick leave to workers.
The ordinance was challenged by the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association and several Pittsburgh businesses that argued that the city lacked the authority to require employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees. The court’s majority, however, found that the city has authority to require paid sick leave under a 1955 Pennsylvania statute that allows cities to enact regulations pertaining to disease prevention.
The three dissenting Justices agreed that Pittsburgh had the statutory authority to issue regulations for the purpose of disease prevention, but disagreed that providing sick days to employees would actually prevent the spread of disease.
Previously, 77 percent of the city’s service workers and 40 percent of its workers overall did not have paid sick leave. Now, employers with more than 15 employees will be required to provide 5 paid sick days a year, while smaller employers must provide 3 days.
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