Lawmakers pass bill providing unlimited sick leave for city workers with 9/11 illnesses in spite of de Blasio pushback
ALBANY — City workers with illnesses linked to Sept.11 could soon see their right to unlimited sick leave enshrined into law.
State legislators gave final approval early Friday to a bill that would grant all city employees suffering from 9/11-related illnesses guaranteed access to time off — bypassing Mayor de Blasio, who currently doles out time through the city’s unions.
“We think this is the fair and right thing to do, to support those who supported us,” said sponsor Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D-Brooklyn). “This right should be universal and unequivocal, not subject to any collective bargaining agreements, not subject to the whims of any mayoral administration.”
City officials argued that the bill is unnecessary, noting that nearly all of the unions representing city employees have finalized sick leave agreements and that 101 employees with diagnosed 9/11-related conditions are being helped.
FDNY and NYPD civilian workers who don’t normally get unlimited sick leave, EMTs, and paramedics would all be covered under the bill. A similar piece of legislation granting unlimited paid sick leave to state employees with a 9/11-related illness outside of the city was signed into law in 2017.