My name is McGinley Jones. My husband, Gale, and I own and operate the Lubec Brewing Co., a small craft brewery and restaurant in Washington County.

We have six employees. Our workers are crucial to the sustainability of our business. We value them. Without them, we are out of business. That is why we pay our workers a fair, living wage and, yes, allow our workers to earn paid sick days.

In rural areas like northern Maine, it is impossible to travel for hours to doctors’ appointments and then go to work on the same day. So many people put off crucial doctors’ appointments and get sicker and sicker until they need to go to the emergency room. That is not good for our workers, not good for our businesses and not good for our communities.

Our brewery and restaurant businesses are in two of the most competitive industries, and they’re located in one of the poorest counties in Maine – if not the poorest – and yet we are able to achieve financial success while offering paid sick days. All of our employees signed a pledge acknowledging that the benefit is intended to be used for actual periods of illness and not simply a day off, and we have had no cases of abuse.

You may hear that instituting paid sick days will put people out of business, but I would point out that many of these same business owners came out publicly with the same claims about fair wages and yet they haven’t closed and Maine’s economy is still going strong. Allowing workers to earn paid sick days is a win-win-win for Maine: for Maine workers, Maine small-business owners and Maine communities.

McGinley Jones

Lubec


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