Bipartisan support emerging for paid family leave

June 24, 2008 | Aaron Keating

The promise of America is one of opportunity – and part of fulfilling that promise is giving our kids a fair start in life. It’s heartening to see some of our country’s leadership taking steps to guarantee that opportunity for the next generation.

On Thursday, the House of Representatives voted 278 to 146 to pass “the first large-scale expansion of parental leave benefits since the passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act in 1993”, according to the bill’s author, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.).

This was a bipartisan effort – all but one Democrat, and 50 Republicans, voted for the bill. The bill faces a veto threat from the President, but passage by such a wide margin is a sign that a national consensus is forming around the need for paid family leave for all American workers.

When times get tough, Americans don’t shirk from a challenge. That’s why it’s said to see some people calling for more business as usual in the face of a rapidly changing and globalizing economy. That kind of “do nothing” thinking will do exactly that for our working families.

But at a cost of only a few cents per hour, paid family leave will make sure we give our kids a fair chance, provide a measure of economic security for working families, and promote new business productivity and growth.

That the kind of leadership our state – and our nation – needs to keep our families and our economy strong.

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Posted in Paid Family and Medical Leave

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