Promote Paid Leave for All

Target: Jodey Arrington, Chair of U.S. House Committee on the Budget

Goal: Invest in paid leave for employees dealing with medical or other personal issues.

Dozens of organizations closed for a day in support of a national push for paid family and medical leave covering all workers. Reasons an employee might legitimately need time off from work are abundant: personal medical conditions, care for an ailing loved one, a new baby, military deployment, or a safety concern. To date, roughly a quarter of states guarantee paid leave, but even when paid time off is promised employers are increasingly rejecting requests. Women in particular are facing obstacles in job growth and long-term employment because of the stressors of work-life balance with little to no give in the workplace. At the federal level, employees cannot even secure a single guaranteed paid day off.

In his State of the Union Address, President Biden called for a change to this narrative. He has since unveiled a proposal for a national paid medical and family leave program under the supervision of the Social Security Administration. According to the proposal, eligible employees would receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave for the aforementioned circumstances. In addition, every worker in America would receive seven days of paid sick leave. These laws would provide protection of the employee’s job during the leave of absence, continue insurance benefits, and ensure the employee is not retaliated against for taking the leave.

While this movement could help millions of Americans, politics is unfortunately once again standing in the way of progress. Sign the petition below to demand leaders set aside their partisanship for the sake of American workers.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Representative Arrington,

As the population ages, healthcare will increasingly conflict with workplace obligations. Add in other life experiences like the birth of a new baby or an unforeseen military deployment, and American workers are feeling the squeeze of responsibility between work life and personal life. This pressure has already led to an accelerated exodus of women from the workforce.

Despite this very real issue that impacts nearly every person in the country, America still stands as the only industrialized nation in the world without a comprehensive paid medical and family leave plan. Currently, only about one-quarter of employees have access to this benefit, and for lower-income workers the access plummets to roughly five percent. This reality must change.

The president’s budget proposal included provisions for a national paid leave program providing employees up to 12 weeks of leave, in alignment with the states that currently offer this benefit. Moreover, every employee would have the assurance that they could stay home sick for a few days without the worry of losing their job. No longer would Americans be forced to choose between their health and their livelihoods.

Please support this effort. Do not let politics run roughshod over a desperately needed reform that could transform the lives of your constituents and of all working Americans.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Nicola Barts


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