Sending Office: Honorable Rosa L. DeLauro
Reintroducing the FAMILY Act
PAID FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE TO IMPROVE THE ECONOMIC SECURITY OF WORKING AMERICANS
Become an original cosponsor of the FAMILY Act
Deadline to be an original: January 29 COB
People across the country are working hard to make ends meet, yet the nation fails to provide the support they need to manage the demands of job and family, and that businesses and our economy need to thrive. A mere 17 percent of the workforce has paid family
leave through their employers, and less than 40 percent has personal medical leave through an employer-provided disability program. When people have to forgo pay or lose a job when a serious medical or caregiving need arises, they often jeopardize their ability
to afford even the most basic necessities. This hurts workers, their families and the businesses that suffer from increased turnover.
We need a national paid leave program that would allow people to receive a portion of their pay when they need time away from their jobs for family or medical reasons, resulting in significant benefits for their families, businesses and our economy. As such,
I began drafting a national paid family and medical leave bill in 2010. After three years of careful deliberation and coalition building, I first introduced the FAMILY Act with Senator Gillibrand in 2013 and reintroduced in every Congress since. In the 115th,
it shared overwhelming Democratic support with 160 cosponsors in the House.
The Family And Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act would:
- Establish a national paid leave insurance program would help keep new parents and family caregivers in the workforce and boost their earnings and savings over time, all of which would contribute to economic productivity and growth.
- Provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of partial income to address their own serious health condition, including pregnancy or childbirth; to deal with the serious health condition of a parent, spouse, domestic partner or child; to care for a new
child; and/or specific military caregiving and leave purposes.
- The FAMILY Act’s wage replacement rate builds on lessons from state paid leave programs in California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and New York to help ensure that caregiving time is affordable for lower-wage workers.
Paid leave insurance programs enjoy a track record of success – and ultimately every American worker and employer deserves the same security, no matter where they are located. Similar family leave insurance programs have existed in California since 2004,
New Jersey since 2009, Rhode Island since 2014, and New York since 2017. Additional programs will begin supporting working families, businesses and the economy in the District of Columbia and Washington State in 2020 and in Massachusetts in 2021. The programs
in Washington and Massachusetts, were adopted with substantial bipartisan support — showing that a common-sense policy like the FAMILY Act could be here in Congress too.
Analysis of state programs shows that both employers and employees have benefitted, and that they have not increased the cost of doing business. This bill has the support of a broad coalition of over 350 organizations from across the country, in virtually
every state. It also has the support of a growing list of businesses, including multistate and multinational companies. In a prior Congress, more than 200 business and management professors also urged Congress to adopt this proposal.
Working people want to be both good employees and good parents, yet 40 percent of Americans say they would not be able to afford an emergency expense of $400. More than 70 percent of voters say they or their families would face significant financial hardship
if they had a serious illness, had a new child or had to care for a seriously ill parent, spouse or child. If we make them choose between one or the other, families, businesses and the economy pay a price. It’s no surprise that voters – across party lines
– support the FAMILY Act model (80 percent support, including strong majorities of Democrats, Republicans and independents) and more than a majority say they personally would benefit from such a program in the future. When people have to lose a paycheck to
meet personal or family health needs, they struggle to afford even the most basic necessities. That is why I ask that you join me and become an original cosponsor of the FAMILY Act.
Please join me as an original cosponsor. If you have any questions, or would like to co-sponsor the bill please contact Elizabeth Albertine at 202-225-3661 or
Rosa L. DeLauro
Member of Congress
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0