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Oregon lawmakers propose requirement that all businesses offer maximum of 7 days paid sick time

A bill set to go before the Oregon Legislature early next year would require Oregon employers to provide as many as seven days of paid sick to their workers – no matter the company's size.

A bill that failed in the 2013 legislative session limited the sick-leave requirement to companies with six or more employees. The new proposal would allow employees to earn one hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked with a 56-hour annual cap.

"But nobody gets sick based on the number of their fellow employees or size of a company," said Sen. Elizabeth Steiner Hayward, D- Beaverton, in a report to the House Business and Labor Committee on Monday, the first of three "legislative days" for lawmakers to prepare for the 2015 session.

Portland and Eugene require paid sick leave, but 47 percent of workers outside the state's two largest cities don't have access to any paid sick days, Steiner Hayward said. Of those employees, she added, 70 percent are considered low-wage workers.

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