Media Contact

Ben Schaefer,, 212-607-3372

March 18, 2020

NEW YORK - Today both chambers of the New York legislature voted to approve an emergency sick leave measure to address the COVID-19 pandemic. In response, the New York Civil Liberties Union released the following statement from executive director Donna Lieberman:

"No matter what, all New Yorkers should be able to take time off work when sick without suffering financially. We're proud to stand with the New York Statewide Paid Leave Coalition to ensure emergency coverage to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is an important step forward to helping more New Yorkers stay safe and healthy without losing a paycheck, and should serve as an urgent reminder that the ability for someone to stay home can be a life or death matter. New Yorkers need permanent paid sick leave. We can’t wait.

Paid sick leave and job security are not a perk, our lives depend on them. We’re facing a crisis now but its impacts will last, and there is much more needed to support some of our most vulnerable and valuable workers, like care workers, domestic workers, undocumented workers, independent contractors, and workers who drive the gig economy who have gone without protections for too long.”