America's Moms Thank the Biden Administration for Advancing Paid Leave on a Bittersweet 30-Year Anniversary of Passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act
“The country's moms thank the Biden/Harris Administration for lifting up paid family and medical leave, and for the victories with the PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, the 30% increase in child care funding, the extended health care coverage for post-partum moms, and more. This lift means the world to the millions of moms and parents in America who are struggling to get through each day.
"But it has been three decades since Congress passed the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the first federal law ever to help people manage their work and family responsibilities. But in the 1990s, the FMLA was designed as a first step and all these years later, our nation still has not taken the next one. That makes this a bittersweet anniversary because the paid family and medical leave that moms, families, businesses and our economy need remains out of reach for most of us.
“We applaud the Biden/Harris administration for the steps it is taking to encourage all federal agencies to make paid leave available to more working people; and for expanding safe leave for federal workers subjected to domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking. We are very pleased that the Women’s Bureau at the U.S. Department of Labor will unveil a website this coming Monday with information on state paid leave programs; and we were thrilled that the Biden/Harris Administration recommitted to fighting for paid family and medical leave.
“But we need Congress to act, too. Today, just 20% of U.S. private sector workers, including only 8% of the lowest wage earners, have access to some form of paid family or medical leave when a new baby arrives or a serious health problem strikes. Because of this, up to one in four women are pushed back to work within just two weeks of giving birth or welcoming a new child. It would be impossible to overstate the harm this is causing as the pandemic turns endemic, we face unprecedented assaults on our access to reproductive health care, and businesses struggle without the workers they need.
“Nearly all other industrialized nations have paid leave programs in place. The United States urgently needs one too. A comprehensive federal paid leave program that covers us all will strengthen families, businesses, our health and our economy. Now and every day, America’s moms will continue telling Congress: America needs paid leave for all, now.”