No Nebraskan should have to choose between the family they love and the job they need. The Nebraska Legislature has a new opportunity to ensure that workers can take time away from work to care for their own health or to provide care to a family member or child. With the passage of LB 311, Nebraska workers won’t have to worry about missing their family’s most precious or critical moments for fear of losing their job or not having access to paid time off. Workers and employers are faced with growing and unmet need for comprehensive paid family and medical leave:
- Paid leave bolsters the health of babies and children. Parental leave has been linked to reduced infant and neonatal deaths, longer periods of breastfeeding, and improved maternal health and well-being.
- Children and families who most need paid leave are unable to access it. It is estimated that only 50% of working Nebraska parents are eligible for unpaid leave under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), of which only 41% can afford to take unpaid leave. Lower-income workers, women, and especially women of color are even less likely to have access to leave.
- Employers are already paying for a growing caregiving crisis. Workers with medical issues, new children, and aging parents are already affecting the bottom lines of businesses through lost productivity, worker turnover, absenteeism, and presenteeism. It is estimated that 1 in 3 workers have left at least one job due to caregiving responsibilities.
It’s time to invest in Nebraska family values. LB 311, the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act, would: (1) allow workers to take time off to care for themselves or a family member with a serious health condition, a new child, or a military family member preparing for or returning from deployment; (2) provide funding for partial wages to be paid on a sliding scale to workers who need leave; and (3) would be funded by contributions from covered employers.
Contact your state senator today to ask them to support Nebraska family values by voting YES on LB 311.
Don't have a Facebook account?