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FAMILY Act Introduced to Create National Paid Family Leave
Today, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D‐NY) and Representative Rosa DeLauro (D‐CT) introduced the FAMILY Act, legislation to establish a national paid family leave program. The Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act would offer 12 weeks of partially paid leave to eligible workers when they need time away from work to bond with a new child, care for a seriously ill family member, deal with their own serious illness, or for certain military caregiving or leave purposes.
The FAMILY Act has taken important lessons from California's Paid Family Leave law, which passed in 2002 and has helped over 1.6 million people take paid leave to care for loved ones by providing paid leave for up to six weeks per year. As the first state to pass this kind of legislation, California has shown that employers are widely supportive of the law and report no ill-effects as a result of implementing it. Of course, families have benefitted greatly from having paid time off to care for ill relatives or to bond with new children.