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Despite being the richest country on the planet, the United States can be pretty cheap when it comes to its workers.

The Economic Policy Institute writes:


"Currently, more than one-third of all workers — 39 percent — have no paid sick days. When these workers get sick, they are forced either to go to work, or to stay home without pay and risk losing their job."

The U.S. ranks lowest — yes, lowest among developed countries when it comes to providing workers with paid sick leave and vacation.

Paid time off is less available to people who need it most.

The highest paid 10% of workers are over four times more likely to have access to paid sick days than the lowest paid 10%.

Think about how that might affect not just low-wage workers, but the people around them — to have to work through illness or injury, prolonging their recovery and exposing others to health risks or even having to leave a loved one in a time of need.

And think of how lack of access to paid sick leave might affect already drastic inequality — with low-wage workers having to forgo pay and risk their jobs to attend to their health or a loved one's.

But here's the thing: It doesn't have to be this way.

The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania thinks we need to push for a policy change:

"In the national struggle over economic inequality, Wharton management professor Peter Cappelli calls mandatory paid sick days for workers the lowest of the low-hanging fruit.
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It has long been the case in the U.S. that many workers are granted paid sick leave by virtue of an individual employer policy or collective bargaining agreement. ... But a national policy regarding paid sick leave has long been a missing link."

You can help to make it possible by pushing your lawmakers and showing love (online and offline) for workers all over the country who are fighting for fair pay and benefits and safer work conditions.

It's not just the economy that's at stake. It's our integrity as a nation.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Co-sleeping isn't for everyone.

The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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