Our new publication, Families First: Workers' Voices During the Pandemic, features the narratives of dozens of workers we've spoken with through our free legal helpline who are struggling to protect their health, care for their families, and stay afloat economically during these unprecedented times. Featured within are stories from workers across 26 states, many of whom have been unable to access emergency leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) due to significant loopholes in the law, and are left with little recourse to avoid jeopardizing their health or their economic security.
Building on changes to paid family and medical leave that many states saw beginning in January 2020, July marks new developments as well. Beginning July 1, workers in Washington, D.C. will be able to take paid family and medical leave benefits under the District’s universal paid leave program—a much needed development as the country continues to battle with COVID-19. Also beginning July 1, workers in California will be able to take up to 8 weeks of family leave benefits in a 12-month period. Similarly, workers in New Jersey will see an increase in the amount of family leave benefits that they’ll be able to take.
The PAID Leave Act, introduced by Rep. DeLauro, Sen. Gillibrand, and Sen. Murray, is a comprehensive emergency paid sick time and paid family and medical leave bill that builds on the protections in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. As COVID-19 spreads and businesses and schools close down nationwide, this bill provides relief that workers and families need now.
If you have to take time off work sick or your workplace closes down, what are your legal rights? If your child’s school is closed, can you stay home? We're updating this page with all the information you need to know about ongoing action and your existing legal rights around paid sick time and paid family and medical leave.
As this country faces a public health emergency of unprecedented proportions, we are pleased that Congress has passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which will provide relief working families need now. For the first time in history, Congress is guaranteeing workers paid sick time to care for their own health or for some close family members when impacted by COVID-19. While passing this bill was a necessary first step, we urge Congress to take further action.
For the first time in history, Congress is addressing the need of workers for paid sick time for themselves or some close family members when impacted by the coronavirus. The bill that was passed last night provides for 10 paid sick days and 12 weeks paid leave for those who are sick from the coronavirus, quarantined, affected by closures or caring for a close family member who is sick, quarantined or affected by closures of schools.
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, 33 million Americans lacked a single day of paid sick time they could use for themselves or to care for a sick family…
February 5th marks the 27th anniversary of the signing of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. The FMLA provides job-protected, unpaid time off for millions of American workers to care for themselves and their families, and has been used over 200 million times since its enactment. Passage of the law was an incredibly important first step, but 40 percent of workers are excluded from the FMLA’s protections. Many more cannot afford to take the unpaid leave it offers. Nearly three decades later, it’s time for the next step: paid leave for all U.S. workers.
The U.S. is facing a maternal and infant health crisis—one that is disproportionately impacting Black women and women of color—as highlighted in a recent Congressional hearing. Although this problem and its solutions are multifaceted, one key piece to addressing this crisis is the need to ensure our workplaces are safe and supportive environments for pregnant workers and mothers. Unfortunately, the reality is that too many pregnant workers and new mothers are forced to risk their health at work—especially those women in low-wage and physically demanding jobs, who are largely women of color.
On January 28, the House Committee on Ways and Means held a hearing on legislative proposals for paid family and medical leave, helmed by Rep. Rosa DeLauro, a champion of The FAMILY Act. The FAMILY Act would guarantee U.S. workers 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave to welcome a new child, care for a family member with a serious illness or disability, attend to their own serious medical needs, or deal with a loved one’s deployment. The hearing represents a historic step forward for this critical legislation!