New Sick Day Law Takes Effect in San Francisco

"There are many companies that already offer sick days. Do those employees abuse the law? I don't think so," Prado said.

George Lopez, manager of the Soup Freak, sees some good in the law.

"I think in the long run it will actually help out because people will be happier," Lopez said.

The law is now drawing national attention. Similar bills have been introduced in New Jersey and Washington state.

"San Francisco helped lead the way, and I think the efforts are picking up steam across the country," said Debra Ness, president of the National Partnership for Women and Families.

Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., hopes to propose the bill on a federal level at a committee hearing next week.

"This is a really a matter of basic human decency. What employer should tell their employee to come to work sick?" Ness said.

Kennedy raised the issue in Congress before, but was unsuccessful; Ness thinks it will play out differently this time.

"We have a very different Congress now. I think the prospects of it seeing some action are much greater. … I don't think San Francisco will be alone long," she said.

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