State Senate Stands Up for NY’s Families by Including Paid Family Leave in Budget

Affiliate: ACLU of New York
March 12, 2016 10:00 am

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The New York State Senate released a proposal for paid family leave today as part of its budget that in key respects adopts the proposals put forward by the Paid Family Leave coalition, Governor Cuomo and the State Assembly, and moves New York a significant step closer to smart, sensible solutions that will help New York’s families and businesses. The Senate proposal would grant all workers in New York paid leave with two-thirds of their salaries and job security for 12 weeks to care for a new child or a seriously ill family member. The New York Civil Liberties Union is among the advocacy organizations that has been pressing for years for the state to support New York’s workers and families by passing the legislation.

The following statement can be attributed to Donna Lieberman, executive director of the NYCLU:

“The Senate’s announcement moves New York a giant step closer to passing paid family leave, which is essential to the health and well-being of New York’s workforce — especially those who live paycheck to paycheck and lack job security. Paid family leave will benefit all New Yorkers who too often have to choose between caring for a family member and keeping their jobs. Moreover, today there are more women in the paid workforce than ever before and many are the primary earner in houses with children. This benefit is critical to achieving economic equality for women, who typically bear the brunt of childcare and family responsibilities.”

“Paid family leave would be financed entirely by modest employee payroll contributions. For the cost of a cup of coffee per week, working people in New York can receive a paid family leave benefit.”

“The Senate’s budget proposal go could further by also seizing the moment, as the Assembly did in its proposal, to increase state-required levels of Temporary Disability Insurance, which has been frozen at $170 per week for more than 25 years, an amount wholly inadequate to meet today’s cost of living.”

“We applaud the State Senate for joining the State Assembly and the governor in supporting paid family leave, and look forward to working with them to creating a stronger, healthier, more equitable New York.”

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