Lawmakers Urge Support for Paid Family & Medical Leave

February 14, 2019, 7:44 AM HST
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Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawai‘i-02) joined a coalition of over 160 lawmakers in introducing legislation that would create a national paid family and medical leave program. The Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act, known as the FAMILY Act, would ensure that every American worker can take up to 12 weeks of paid leave for a pregnancy or the birth or adoption of a child, to recover from a serious illness, or to care for a seriously ill family member.

Rep. Gabbard said: “Across the country, people are working hard every day, living paycheck to paycheck, barely making enough to get by. When a crisis arises, like a parent who falls sick, a personal health crisis, or a newborn child, the demands of balancing a job and family needs can be too much. Without a national family leave policy, millions of Americans are forced to make an impossible choice between their family’s health and their financial security. Our legislation will provide the security our working families need to care for their loved ones, without risking their ability to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table.”

The FAMILY Act establishes a national family and medical leave insurance program. Receiving paid leave benefits allows workers to take time away from their jobs to address their most-pressing needs.

Specifically, the legislation would provide eligible employees up to 12 weeks of partial income to address:

  • A serious personal health condition, including pregnancy or childbirth,
  • A family member with a serious health condition,
  • A newborn, newly-adopted child, or a newly-placed foster child, or
  • A service member injured due to deployment.

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