Image copyright OHIO.ORG Image caption The move has been criticized as an attempt to save money during budget time
The Ohio legislature has approved a bill requiring people working for large companies to take at least seven days of paid sick leave each year.
It will only become effective after a 90-day waiting period.
The Republican governor has signed the bill into law, extending paid sick leave provisions now only available to employees of privately owned businesses.
Critics say it will lead to a rise in forced redundancies.
Disability, for example, is not typically a characteristic employers seek to recruit.
The new law is being overseen by the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services.
“We think this is a good thing,” said the department’s interim director Frank Ehret, said on Friday.
Image copyright OHIO.ORG Image caption Under the new rules, employees of charities and exempt companies will be required to take eight paid sick days a year
“It helps folks in our state protect themselves from falling sick, and it helps those who work for companies that allow them to work remotely to continue to do their jobs during the workers are away from the office.”
Under the new rules, employees of charities and exempt companies will be required to take eight paid sick days a year.
Other companies will be required to give employees 12 paid sick days a year.
Employees will be required to take sick days over time, rather than at once, meaning people could fall into a cycle of three to six days between days off due to illness.
The Ohio Republican party has argued the measure is necessary to protect young workers from influenza and other “stomach ailments”.
The change is being protested by labour unions and Democrats.
Governor Doug Ford of Ontario, a fellow Republican, rejected similar legislation in 2016 saying it was an “extreme” measure and could lead to forced redundancies and termination for workers who choose not to take time off work.