The working parents’ guide to dealing with sick kids

Know your rights
Depending on where you live, provincial law may provide you with a specific number of unpaid days to care for your child through a non-life-threatening illness. “What it’s really doing is protecting your job and not making parents have an untenable choice,” says Jody Heymann, founding director of the Institute for Health and Social Policy at McGill University in Montreal. “Unpaid leave is very low-cost to employers.” Heymann urges parents to discuss their child care needs with elected provincial representatives and encourages employers who offer paid sick days to allow parents to use them for themselves or their kids.

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