Mom Leaders Commend Senate Finance Committee for Hearing on Paid Leave, Say Country Needs a Comprehensive National Paid Leave Program Now
“Today’s Senate Finance Committee hearing is an important moment in the fight to win the kind of comprehensive paid family and medical leave program the country urgently needs. This issue has languished in Congress for much too long, and we commend Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden (D-OR) for holding this hearing and recognizing that paid family and medical leave is urgently needed, proven to work for employees and employers, and tremendously popular.
“America’s moms and families need paid leave in order to thrive, but just one in four workers (25%) in the United States have access to paid family leave through their employers, and just two in five (41%) have access to personal medical leave through an employer’s short-term disability plan. Because our country guarantees zero weeks of paid leave, too many women must go right back to their jobs after having babies. Too many parents can’t hold their child’s hand during chemotherapy. Too many of us can’t help our loved ones adjust to rehab or memory care. Too many of us miss our baby’s first smile or parent’s last breath.
“We need paid leave in the moments that break our hearts and the moments that fill them with joy. This hearing should be the final step before both chambers vote to implement a comprehensive national paid family and medical leave program.”
Statement of Ruth Martin, Senior Vice President & Chief Workplace Justice Officer, MomsRising
“Every day our country is without a comprehensive national paid family and medical leave program is a day when moms are forced back to their jobs mere days after giving birth. A day when workers facing cancer, heart disease, or other serious illnesses can’t take the time they need to heal and recover. A day when children with serious health problems are without parents who want to comfort them. A day when seniors facing life-threatening illnesses are without loved ones who want to provide care. A day when businesses lose valued employees and incur massive expenses to recruit and train replacements. It’s a day when our economy suffers terribly.
“America’s moms thank the Biden/Harris administration for doing all it can to provide paid family and medical leave, and the state lawmakers and business leaders who have implemented paid leave policies.
But it isn’t enough. America needs a comprehensive paid leave program – not a tax credit, not an adjustment to Social Security, not a smoke-and-mirrors solution. We need the FAMILY (Family and Medical Insurance Leave) Act, recently reintroduced in both the House and Senate, to create a permanent, national paid family and medical leave program that ensures every worker, no matter the size of their employer or if they are self-employed or work part-time, has access to paid leave for every serious medical event.
“The United States is one of the only countries in the world without any form of paid leave. It’s time for Congress to change that. Paid family and medical leave is good for parents, families, businesses and our economy. The time to pass it is now.”
Statement of Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, Executive Director and CEO, MomsRising