Washington, DC – Today, for the first time, national and state groups have launched a collaborative—Paid Leave for All—to raise funds, hire shared staff and develop a coordinated strategy to win an inclusive paid family and medical leave policy with bipartisan support.
These groups have been driving state wins and research for years, paving the way for a national law. They fought to pass the federal Family and Medical Leave Act and secured comprehensive paid family and medical leave policies in states across the country, proving along the way that these policies are good for workers, families, businesses and the economy. Paid Leave for All will leverage its shared assets, including deep policy expertise and an extensive body of research, broad grassroots networks across the country, and diverse partners and communications tools. This collaborative addresses the need for coordination on messaging and strategy across the different sectors and advocates invested in paid leave, as well as a vehicle for channeling resources for fast-paced action across field, communications and policy work.
Hallmarks of Paid Leave for All include a Worker Advisory Group to help ensure the policy will be effective for all workers, regardless of income, race, age or ability; Small Business for Paid Leave, which launches on December 11 and elevates the voices of small business owners who know an inclusive federal plan is the way for them to ensure paid leave for their employees and to be able to compete with large corporations; and an Advisory Council of leading political and policy experts.
“While paid leave is picking up visibility and momentum, details matter. Paid Leave for All is championing a comprehensive and affordable plan that covers all working people and provides time away from work for caregiving, no matter where you live or work or whom you love,” said Dawn Huckelbridge, director of Paid Leave for All. “We need an evidence-based program that’s sustainable and builds on the models already operating in multiple states. We know that an inclusive paid leave plan is supported by voters on both sides of the aisle, that it boosts bottom lines for businesses, and that our current laws aren’t keeping up with the needs of our families or a 21st century economy.”
The United States is one of the only countries in the world without a national paid leave program. Currently 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 1 in 4 employed mothers return to work within two weeks of giving birth and 1 in 5 retirees leave the workforce earlier than planned to care for an ill family member. Meanwhile, research has shown that paid leave programs increase businesses’ profitability and improve whole families’ health and financial outcomes, and recent polling has found that 84 percent of voters support a comprehensive plan for all working people.
Paid Leave for All’s Steering Committee includes 9to5, A Better Balance, The Arc of the United States, Black Women’s Roundtable, Caring Across Generations, Center for American Progress, Center for Law and Social Policy, Center for Economic and Policy Research, Family Values @ Work, Labor Project for Working Families, Main Street Alliance, MomsRising, National Partnership for Women & Families and Poder Latinx. The growing campaign already includes dozens of member and supporter organizations across the country.