We know families and the nation are strongest when we have time to heal from illness or injury, to welcome a new child, to help a loved one recover or ease their passing. Yet the United States is one of the only countries in the world that doesn’t guarantee paid leave. Only 19 percent of U.S. workers have access to paid family leave through an employer and only 40 percent have access to short-term disability insurance. Nearly one in four employed mothers return to work within two weeks of giving birth and one in five retirees leave the workforce earlier than planned to care for an ill family member. Our current laws aren’t keeping up with the needs of our families or a 21st century economy.
But this picture is beginning to change. Thanks to the hard work of coalitions across the country, states have begun passing their own paid family and medical leave laws. And voters across the political spectrum support a national paid family and medical leave policy that covers all working people. The majority of small business owners agree. Joining them are a growing number of experts, health professionals, large employers and others who say it’s time for paid leave for all.
A new campaign, Paid Leave for All, will provide the strategy and coordinated effort to turn this urgent need into political reality.
The campaign will leverage our groups’ policy expertise and research, partnerships and grassroots memberships in the field, and our storytellers and communications tools to drive a win and enact a comprehensive and inclusive federal paid family and medical leave program with bipartisan support by 2023.