Restaurant Workers Without Healthcare

NEW YORK, Oct. 1 (UPI) — Many U.S. restaurant workers go to work sick, don’t get sick days and lack health insurance, a report says.

The report on the health, safety and healthcare of restaurant workers was prepared by the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, a New York-based restaurant workers’ organization supporting higher wages and better work conditions for restaurant employees, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.

The report, “Serving While Sick,” is based on 4,323 surveys of restaurant workers across the country plus 240 employer interviews, the newspaper said.

Most workers surveyed said taking time off when sick was difficult. Almost 90 percent said they don’t get paid sick days, nearly 80 percent said they don’t get paid vacation days, and about 64 percent said they’ve worked while sick.

Most workers said they don’t take time off when sick because they won’t get paid and fear too much time taken off will result in being fired.

The majority of workers, 89.7 percent, said they don’t get health insurance through their employer, and 62 percent said they don’t have any health insurance at all.

The report recommends workers receive benefits such as paid sick days and health insurance, health and safety training, and improving health and safety conditions in restaurants.

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