Success: San Francisco Guarantees Fully Paid Leave For All New Parents

Target: District 5 Supervisor of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, London Breed

Goal: Applaud a new ordinance that requires six weeks of fully paid leave for all new parents.

San Francisco recently became the first city in the country to guarantee six weeks of leave for all new parents, with 100 percent compensation, thanks partly to support from groups like ForceChange. The United States is currently one of only two countries in the world that does not legally require any paid parental leave. Some states, including California, have their own laws requiring paid leave, but California’s law only guarantees that parents get 55 percent of their pay during their time off. San Francisco’s law is the first to guarantee 100 percent.

The United States’ lack of paid family leave has the greatest impact on low-income families, who cannot live on a single income, do not have large sums of money saved, and cannot afford to take off work for extended periods of time. No parent should have to choose between going to work to earn money and staying home to take care of their child. Offering partially paid leave is better than nothing, but it is insufficient because people’s expenses increase, not decrease, when they have children. Offering fully paid leave to parents is a common sense measure which ensures that children will get the care they need.

Sign the petition below to thank the Board of Supervisors for passing this ordinance.


Dear Supervisor Breed,

I am writing to thank you and the other district supervisors in San Francisco for voting for the new ordinance which guarantees fully paid parental leave. You and your fellow supervisors have set a great example for the rest of the country, which is severely lagging behind on this very important issue.

As I am sure you know, the United States is one of only two countries in the world that does not have any law to establish paid parental leave. This should serve as a wake-up call for all our lawmakers. We are doing a real disservice to parents, especially low-income parents, by forcing them to choose between taking care of their children and going to work to earn income.

This new ordinance guarantees that parents in San Francisco will no longer be forced to make that choice. I have high hopes that other cities and states will start following your example, so that paid parental leave can become a right guaranteed to everyone in the United States.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Petr Kratochvil

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