“We all get sick, face family emergencies, and need to take time away from work for other reasons,” said National Partnership for Women & Families President Debra L. Ness. “The tsunami of eldercare needs just around the corner will only exacerbate that reality. But millions of Americans cannot take the leave they need without jeopardizing their jobs and their economic security. The Labor Department data released today underscores just how inequitable leave is in this country. Latinos, younger workers, those in low-wage and part-time jobs, and those in the leisure and hospitality industries are much less likely than others to be able to take the time off they need. This is a country of ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’ in terms of access to family friendly policies. That needs to change.”
“These issues are of paramount importance to workers and their families,” Ness continued. “We need Congress to: pass the Healthy Families Act so millions more workers can earn paid sick days; adopt a federal family and medical leave insurance program; and include a state paid leave fund in next year’s budget. Fair, reasonable leave policies are good for workers, families, business and the country.”
The National Partnership for Women & Families drafted and led the fight for the Family and Medical Leave Act. The organization is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, access to quality health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at www.NationalPartnership.org.