Essential Not Expendable: Lulu’s story

This is on behalf of all the employees, that at the moment, are essential workers.

As for me, I work for a fast food chain where sick leave is not an option for us. I am a single mother of two girls and working two jobs, from 7am-2pm and 5pm to 12:30am. I have to work this hard just to care for my kids and myself. Luckily, my morning job offers sick leave but my night job at the fast food chain doesn’t.

Living and working without paid sick leave is exhausting.

I worry for my kids with this pandemic and the rest of family. I go to work everyday not knowing what’s going to happen- will this be the day I or one of my family members gets sick from COVID?

I’ve been exposed a couple of times and luckily, I’ve been healthy.

Like any caring parent, I worry everyday if me or anyone in my household gets sick, but on top of that I have to ask “how will I manage paying my bills as the head of my household?” I can’t afford staying home without any pay. That’s why I think sick leave is really important to every employee out there risking their lives and their families’ lives.

They call us essential workers but they don’t act that way.

I feel like we are overlooked and not taken seriously- it shows by how our employers and government treat us. We work long hours and yet if we get sick we go home with no pay. I think it’s time New Mexico does something for us employees risking our lives every day. We’re just asking for what every employee should have available already.

I say YES to sick leave for every employee.



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OLÉ is a community organization, who uses grassroots organizing within the local community of working families in New Mexico.