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Paid sick days, sometimes referred to as sick leave, guarantees workers time off to stay home when they are sick without losing pay or their jobs. Some paid sick days policies also allow paid sick time to be used to care for sick family members, to attend doctor or medical appointments or to address health and safety needs related to domestic violence or sexual assault. Nearly half of workers in the private sector (48 percent) do not have a single paid sick day to recover from illness or to care for a sick family member. As a result, they face difficult choices: lose a day's pay or even their jobs, or go to work sick and risk infecting coworkers and customers. Parents who lack paid sick days are often forced to choose between their jobs and their sick children. Nearly half (49 percent) of working mothers miss work when a child contracts a common illness. Three in four low-wage workers (79 percent) do not have a single paid sick day. These workers are least able to afford to take unpaid time off or risk losing their jobs.