Rep. Tulsi Gabbard: Working Families Deserve Paid Family and Medical Leave

Feb 9, 2017

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Press Release

Washington, DC—Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) joined Rep. Rosa DeLauro and fellow lawmakers in reintroducing the Family and Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act, legislation that would help protect working families and provide paid family and medical leave. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is an original cosponsor of the bill.

“While the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) has empowered millions over the past two decades, we must do more. Only 39% of working parents and 35% of working mothers are eligible for and can afford to take unpaid family and medical leave through the FMLA,” said Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. “Our current family leave policies fall behind every other industrialized nation, and leave millions of people choosing between their family’s health and financial stability. Congress must take the next step forward by passing the FAMILY Act to better protect and empower working parents and families in Hawaiʻi and across the country.”

Background: The Family and Medical Leave Act passed in 1993 provides unpaid, job-protected leave for serious health related events. However, only about half of the workforce qualifies for this unpaid leave, and many more simply cannot afford to take it because it is unpaid. The FAMILY Act (H.R.947) would establish a medical leave insurance program in the U.S. and allow workers to make 60% of their pay for up to 12 weeks to care for:
•    A serious personal health condition
•    A family member with a serious health condition
•    A newborn, newly-adopted child, or a newly-placed foster child
•    An injured servicemember arising from deployment.