New Jersey in October of 2019, put into law the Earned Sick Leave Act which states that any employer must give all full time, part time and temporary employees up to 40 hours a year for earned sick leave to care for themselves or a loved one. There are stiff penalties and fines to employers who do not adhere to this law.

Nationally there has been an influx of Americans admitting that they called out sick when they actually weren’t. According to a new study by Moneypenny an amazing 50% of Americans make that call to take a sick day when they weren’t and 29% of those saying that they do so because of family reasons. If you couple those that are faking illness with those who actually are, the work force here in America continues to take a beating; such was the case with the pandemic.

As many employees were home during the pandemic as soon as the pandemic eased up and employees started to return to their work place more people called in saying that they had the second round of Covid-19 when they really didn’t.

Drazen Zigic
Drazen Zigic

As a result of the crushing decrease in the workforce, goods, productivity and eventually profits took a pretty big loss in both corporate America and local small businesses. We saw too many great establishments who were in business for many years close their doors because of lack of employees and/or the increase in the cost of goods to do business.

Those here in New Jersey knowing that they have those 40 hours, or a week, to take when they are sick or to care for a loved one are less likely to call in a fake illness to their employer than the national percentage but to be fair it still happens here in the Garden State but not as much as the national average.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 weekend host Big Joe Henry. Any opinions expressed are Big Joe’s own.

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These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey

A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.

From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.

Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.

If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.

Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.

You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.

Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.

Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.

I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions:

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