Paid Family Leave is a Must

May 30, 2019
Americans should never have to choose between receiving a paycheck and taking care of themselves or a loved one. It is embarrassing that we are the only industrialized country that does not have national paid family and medical leave. 
At some point, nearly everyone will need time away from work to care for a loved one. Unfortunately, only 17% of working people have access to paid leave through their job. We must support both workers and families nationwide to achieve the crucial balance between family life and professional life. 
Today, the Ways and Means Committee held the first-ever full committee hearing on paid family and medical leave. We heard from small business owners, caregivers, anti-poverty experts, and government officials who have seen this plan work in their home states. I support the FAMILY Act, which would ensure that workers can take up to 12 weeks of paid leave for a pregnancy, the birth or adoption of a child, to recover from a serious illness, or to care for a seriously ill family member. 
We will all be called upon in our lives to care for ourselves or our loved ones. This heavy responsibility is a fact of life and should not be compounded by the stress of balancing a job and putting food on the family table. Currently, 100 million people without paid family and medical leave are being left behind. That needs to change.