American Women Statement on the 23rd Anniversary of the Family and Medical Leave Act

 ·  American Women, American Women

 

For Immediate Release                                             
February 5, 2016

 

American Women Statement on the 23rd Anniversary of the Family and Medical Leave Act

 

Washington, D.C. -- Today, American Women’s Executive Director Kate Black issued the following statement on the 23rd anniversary of the Family and Medical Leave Act:

“When the Family Medical Leave Act was signed into law 23 years ago today, it was a tremendous first step in strengthening families and improving the quality of life of workers. This law was a welcome relief for the more than 90 million workers who have enjoyed job protection while welcoming a new child, taking care of a sick family member or themselves without the added burden of losing their job.

“But as our economy, our families and our workforce have dramatically changed in the last two decades, many workers and families have been forced to choose between their jobs and going into debt or risking bankruptcy while they take care of a new baby or a loved one. Women now make up nearly half of the labor force and are the primary or co-breadwinners in two-thirds of American households with children under 18 yet, 40 percent of workers have no access to unpaid family and medical leave, never mind paid leave.

“Despite these changes, our workplace policies have not kept up. It is time to expand the FMLA and provide paid family and medical leave so that working families get a fair shot at getting ahead, not just getting by.”

 

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