The United States is one of the few nations on the planet where paid family and medical leave or earned sick time is not the law of the land. In fact, only 12 percent of private-sector workers have access to paid family leave through their employers. Access to paid leave is particularly low among Hispanics, African Americans, and low-wage workers.
Fortunately, however, we have seen remarkable progress outside of Washington, where innovative state and local officials are working hard to design paid leave policies for their own people. As I travel around the country, I am inspired by leaders who know that offering paid leave – whether sick time or family leave –isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s essential to building an economy that works for everyone.
That’s why I am proud to announce that the Department of Labor Women’s Bureau is awarding $1.55 million in grants to research and analyze how paid family and medical leave programs can be developed and implemented across the country. The grant funding, triple what we invested in 2014, will support eight grantees at the state and municipal level – where forward-thinking leaders have recognized that working people shouldn’t have to win the “boss lottery” to have access to paid leave. These funds will help further our understanding of the issue and inform the design of programs that work for our families and the economy.
We’re number one? If by that, you mean not number one, then yes. The original link shows a chart of industrialized countries and their paid leave positions by weeks granted. The goose egg at the end is the United States. Multinational companies that are U.S-based provide leave for employees all over the world but not here at home. Imagine that? Where is the shareholder activist on this score?