Protecting Workers during the Coronavirus Pandemic

March 13. 2020

For over 45 years, Equal Rights Advocates has advocated for workers who do not have access to job protected, paid sick days. While we have made progress in some states, the vast majority of workers remain vulnerable in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here are the latest developments  in legislation to expand worker protections, and how you can join ERA in supporting these efforts:

  • Paid Sick Leave Mandates: There is no federal law requiring sick leave, and only a handful of laws mandate it. These states include California, Nevada, Arizona, Oregon, Washington, Michigan, Maryland, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Washington D.C. Maine’s paid sick leave law will go into effect in 20201.

To support a federal bill that would permanently give all U.S. workers access to paid sick days, please join us in asking your Representative to support the Healthy Families Act.

  • Proposed Temporary Federal Sick Leave Benefit: The good news is that House Democrats have proposed a temporary federal sick leave benefit as part of emergency legislation to address the COVID-19 crisis. The proposed multi-billion dollar package (thus far rejected by the White House and Republicans in both chambers) also includes free testing for coronavirus, food aid, and expanded unemployment insurance. Negotiations continue.

If this package passes, we will let you know via social media. Follow ERA on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

  • Unemployment Insurance Benefits for Workers Affected by Coronavirus: The federal Department of Labor has announced that states may pay benefits to (1) quarantined workers (2) those who leave work to avoid exposure or to care for a family member; and (3) those not working because of operations closed due to the coronavirus. Learn more.

Know Your Rights: Resources

Learn more about your rights to see how you can protect your health, and the health of your loved ones, coworkers, and community. We recommend these two resources:

Stay Connected & Take Action

Legal Advice & Resources / Consejos y Recursos legales

Know Your Rights

Learn what your rights are so you can navigate your situation and make the best decision for you.

Your Rights at Work
Your Rights at School

Contact Us

We may be able to provide free legal help for the following issues at California schools: gender and LGBTQI+ discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual assault.

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We have trained legal advocates and lawyers on staff to guide you through your legal issue.

Conozca Sus Derechos

Aprende sus derechos para que puedas navegar su situación y tomar la mejor decisión para ti.

Sus Derechos en el Trabajo


Posible que podamos proveer ayuda legal por gratis por los siguientes problemas en el trabajo o la escuela: discriminación basado en el género o por LGBTQI+, acoso sexual, asalto sexual, y discriminación basado en el embarazo o por ser padre/madre.


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