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Thanks To McConnell, COVID Stimulus Bill Does Not Include Paid Sick Leave For Workers Who Get Coronavirus

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) successfully blocked an extension of paid sick leave benefits for people who test positive for COVID-19 in the recent $900 billion relief package that was passed by Congress on Monday night.

The CARES Act approved in March had provided 14 mandatory paid sick days for workers who fell ill with the virus or who had to care for someone with the virus. Now, employers will no longer have to provide paid sick leave to workers who get infected with COVID-19 after McConnell blocked that extension from being included in Congress’s latest coronavirus aid package.

The Daily Boulder previously reported that McConnell was pushing to block the paid leave mandate from being extended. Congressional aides in both parties confirmed Monday that the extension was left out of the aid bill after McConnell threatened to block the entire bill from the Senate floor.

According to BuzzFeed News, House Democrats led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi pushed for an extension of the federal aid, which is set to expire on December 31. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell managed to block their bid during negotiations. That means roughly 87 million workers will lose access to the protections in just 10 days.

The bill is headed to President Donald Trump’s desk for his signature and is expected to be signed into law soon.