Wunderman Thompson has created Theraflu's first-ever short film aimed at raising awareness for those without the right to rest. Calling In Sick features three mothers from three different generations chronicling their own stories of how being priced out of rest has affected them and their families. Each story is told over the phone to invoke the shared dread that comes with asking for an unpaid day to rest. More than one third of all Black and Latina women working in the USA are disproportionally impacted by this lack of paid sick days, which is why Theraflu founded the Rest and Recover Fund in 2021. The fund offers those without the right to rest microgrants to help offset the lost wages from taking an unpaid sick day. 2022’s Calling In Sick was created to help drive awareness as Theraflu ramps up to create positive political change in the campaign’s following years.

Theraflu Calling in Sick film

Bring awareness to the lack of affordable rest in the USA, the only high-income country that doesn’t guarantee its workers paid sick days.

A common thread emerged during our research into the USA’s lack of rest. The fear of judgement that comes from calling in sick is a palpable and shared experience among those who simply can’t afford to take a day off; those without the right to rest.

Calling In Sick – A short film that gives Black and Latina mothers disproportionally affected by a lack of rest a voice. Three true stories told over the phone, invoking the dread that comes with simply asking for some time to rest.

We provided a platform, opened a dialogue on paid sick leave and got Americans talking about a systemic problem. And the certainty from a paid sick day allowed Black and Latina mothers to take the time off they needed to get better. We supported hundreds of families in 2021 with access to sick days across the US. More importantly, The Right to Rest Fund started a real conversation about sick leave in the United States.

And we’re just getting started.

GSK is on a mission to make healthcare more accessible to everyone, and Theraflu leads that charge with a movement that aims to make rest and recovery a right, not a privilege. Authenticity was central to this campaign, with this in mind we told the story from the perspective of Black and Latina women who are most affected by not having the privilege of sick time.

Cass Zawadowski

VP, Executive Creative Director, Wunderman Thompson Canada

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2022 Webby Awards

2022 Webby Awards



Universe Multicultural Film Festival 2023

Universe Multicultural Film Festival 2023

Official selection of the Universe Multicultural Film Festival 2023

Official selection of the Universe Multicultural Film Festival 2023