Schatz Introduces Federal Paid Family Leave Act

April 14, 2019, 8:31 AM HST · Updated April 14, 8:31 AM
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US Senator Brian Schatz introduced the Federal Employees Paid Leave Act, new legislation that would provide federal employees with 12 weeks of paid leave to care for family members.

“It’s 2019. Everyone’s juggling work and family, but the policies haven’t changed with the times,” said Senator Schatz. “Our bill will provide federal workers with 12 weeks of paid leave, making sure no federal employee has to make the impossible choice between caring for their family and keeping their job.”

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Although the Family and Medical Leave Act allows employees to take 12 weeks of unpaid leave to tend to medical and family issues, it does not provide any paid leave.

According to Sen. Schatz, studies have shown that providing paid leave for federal employees would save the government at least $50 million annually in turnover and replacement costs. He said federal agencies are already struggling to recruit and retain young talent. Just 6% of the federal workforce is under the age of 30, while roughly 40% of the workforce is eligible to retire within the next three years.

“For too many Americans, hard work doesn’t pay off. If we truly value the dignity of work, we need to recognize that paid family leave is something all workers should have the opportunity to earn,” said Senator Brown. “I’m glad to join Senators Schatz, Van Hollen, and Merkley on this important legislation as we continue to invest in our workforce and ensure that hard work is rewarded.”

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