Starting Jan. 1, 2014, all employees in Portland, Ore., will be entitled to as many as 40 hours a year of sick leave, either paid or unpaid depending on the size of the company. Companies with six or more employees must provide paid leave; smaller companies must provide unpaid leave.

Employees in the city who work at least 240 hours a year will accrue an hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, according to the statute. The ordinance also includes strong anti-retaliation measures for employers who harass employees for taking sick leave or who deny sick leave requests.

For businesses that already provide at least five days of sick leave, the ordinance imposes no new requirements.

Portland thus becomes only the fifth governmental entity in the U.S. to mandate sick leave, joining San Francisco, Seattle, Washington, D.C., and the state of Connecticut. A similar bill is being considered in the state legislature.