(New York, N.Y.) The following is a statement from Sherry Leiwant, Co-Founder & Co-President of A Better Balance:
For far too long workers in the United States — unlike other workers around the world — have lacked support to care for themselves and their loved ones during illness or when a new child arrives. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown in sharp relief that we cannot continue to fail workers when they need to care for themselves or their families. We are thrilled that the proposal put forth today by Chairman Richard Neal and the Ways and Means Committee will rectify this glaring gap in our policies by proposing a bold, inclusive paid family and medical leave plan families across America need now, with a program that is permanent, covers all workers, and addresses a range of caregiving needs, providing 12 weeks of paid leave to care for one’s own medical needs, care for a seriously ill loved one, to welcome a new child, or address the impact of military deployment.
At A Better Balance, through our free legal helpline, we hear every day from workers across the country, especially low wage workers and mothers of color, who are forced to make impossible choices as they struggle to protect their health, care for their children and other loved ones, and stay afloat economically. We’ve seen firsthand how well paid leave programs in states like New York are working, offering a critical lifeline for working families. Now, we need to extend these rights to every worker in the country.
A Better Balance applauds Chairman Richard Neal and the Ways and Means Committee for their deep commitment and continual leadership in advancing paid leave for all and for recognizing that a new program as important as this will require a robust commitment of resources to fulfill its purpose. We look forward to continuing to work with Congress and the White House to advance this critical bill—it is an urgent matter of gender and racial equity, economic recovery, and public health.”
ABOUT A BETTER BALANCE: A Better Balance is a national legal advocacy organization dedicated to advancing justice for workers caring for themselves and their loved ones. ABB is a leader in the federal Paid Leave for All campaign and has played an instrumental role in passing paid leave policies in states across the country.