Cafe Society

Reader: Initiative 300 will encourage workers to stay home with hangovers, not flu

At 10 a.m. today, the Colorado Restaurant Association and other organizations that oppose Initiative 300, the Paid Sick and Safe Leave proposal on Denver's upcoming ballot, will host a "300 against 300" rally in Skyline Park, just off the 16th Street Mall at Arapahoe. The organizers are trying to bring out several hundred restaurant employees -- ideally in uniform -- to show that both rank and file oppose the language of this proposal.

Some restaurateurs are already showing their opposition in comments posted after news of the rally, including RR, who doesn't offer the rosiest view of employees:

Many (majority) of restaurant employees are young and still partying. The reality of this paid sick leave mess is that employees will absolutely still come to work with the flu. Restaurant employees will burn up their sick days on hangovers instead of legitimate sickness, and still show up sneezing and coughing when their days are used up.

I've been in this industry for 21 years and what I just said won't universally be the case; however, it's the most likely happening. This initiative should be renamed the 'Don't be responsible because the law has your ass covered' proposition.

Further, how are restaurants going to serve you good people when 75% of our staffs take sick on New Years Eve or the day before Thanksgiving or 4th of July? Nobody likes working on these days, but it's the nature of the industry we've chosen to work within. This overreaching initiative has far too many negative impacts that out way the Utopian dream it strives for.

Hear more at the rally today -- and in the meantime, read more opinions both pro and con here.

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun