Sask. Party denies paid sick leave for working people

One year after a bill was first introduced in the legislature in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Sask. Party has officially voted against providing paid sick leave for working people in the province.

“While the Sask. Party voting against paid sick leave is disappointing, it’s not surprising,” said SFL President Lori Johb. “Throughout the pandemic, the Sask. Party government has shown a total lack of respect for workers- from failing to provide proper PPE in workplaces, overwhelming our hospitals and forcing health care workers to work with unsafe staffing levels, to refusing to give wage top-ups to all front line workers. The Sask. Party voting against legislation for paid sick leave today is yet another blow to the working people in this province who have put their health and safety at risk to keep our province running throughout the pandemic.”

The bill, introduced by Saskatoon-University MLA and Critic for Labour Jennifer Bowes, would have ensured 10 days of permanent, paid sick leave for all workers in the province.

Despite the Sask. Party using their majority to vote down the legislation, Johb said Saskatchewan’s labour movement will continue to fight for paid sick leave for all workers.

“Too many workers in Saskatchewan don’t have access to paid sick leave and are faced with no choice but to either go to work sick or miss out on their paycheque,” said Johb. “Paid sick leave will go a long way towards ensuring safer and healthier workplaces and make life better for thousands of working people across the province. If the Sask. Party won’t support paid sick leave, then Saskatchewan’s labour movement will work to elect a government that will.”