Target: District 5 Supervisor of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, London Breed
Goal: Approve 100 percent paid parental leave for bonding time with newborns.
The U.S. trails far behind other nations in its financial support of new parents, with zero mandatory requirements for paid parental leave. However, a recent ordinance proposed in San Francisco aims to offer better support for all parents, regardless of gender, race, or sexual orientation. The proposed legislation would require that all new parents have access to six weeks of paid bonding time with their new child, and that during this time they be paid 100 percent of their regular wages.
Legislation in California currently allows for parents to take six weeks of bonding time, but the state only pays 55 percent of their salary during this time. Under this new proposal, all employers would be required to pay the remaining 45 percent of new parents’ wages during the six week bonding period so that parents don’t lose any income by choosing to stay home. While the current 55 percent of paid wages during bonding leave is helpful, it is simply not enough for many parents to actually stay home with their children. The intent of this new legislation is that new parents will not have to choose between spending important time with their babies and making enough money to make ends meet, thus allowing more parents to stay home with their children.
Having a baby is an emotional and vulnerable time of life that many countries around the world support and protect through paid parental leave. It is ridiculous that parents in the U.S. are not amply supported during this time of transition. This new proposal in San Francisco is important and progressive legislation that will hopefully pave the way for similar laws across the country. Please sign the below petition to show your support for improved parental leave laws by demanding that new parents be paid 100 percent of their salary during six weeks of bonding time.
Dear Supervisor Breed,
I am writing to request that you and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors pass a proposed ordinance mandating that all new parents have access to six weeks of bonding time with their newborns while being paid 100 percent of their salary. As I’m sure you’re aware, the U.S. is very far behind other nations in its financial support of new parents. This is something that has to change, and this proposed ordinance is an important and progressive step forward.
While it is excellent that the state of California currently offers to pay new parents 55 percent of their salary if they choose to take six weeks of bonding time, there are many parents who are unable to make use of this benefit. Having a new baby is expensive, and only adds to the financial burden of new parents. As a result, many parents cannot afford to only be paid a little more than half their salary for six weeks, and must opt to go back to work rather than bond with their child. It is essential that this ordinance be approved so that parents won’t have to worry about lost income, thus allowing more parents to stay home with their children during an important time in their development.
The U.S. is currently failing new parents by not requiring mandatory paid parental leave, but we can still work toward important change at city and state levels. Please make every effort to ensure that all parents have the opportunity to be paid 100 percent of their salary during essential bonding time with their newborns.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: ekseaborn0