The Trump Administration's paid parental leave proposal leaves out millions of people. It comes as we mark 25 years of the Family and Medical Leave Act, which was an important step but does not do enough to improve job quality for low-wage workers.
Economic justice was a critical part of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s lifelong pursuit of racial equity. King decried the poverty wages of African American workers and promoted fair compensation and working conditions as crucial to a just society.
Could it be that workers whose employers offer leave benefits actually end up getting sick less often because they are happier? Senator Al Franken (D-MN), tongue firmly in cheek, proposed this “radical” idea at a hearing on paid leave held by the Senate Health Economic Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee’s Subcommittee on Children and Families.
On this anniversary, policymakers, advocates, and businesses are calling for Congress to do more for working families.
The FMLA provides some workers with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to care for a new baby, tend to a sick family member, or recover from one’s own illness. Having access to this type of leave has enabled many workers to take the leave they need without worrying about the security of their jobs. Yet, many others are excluded from the law.