Obama plan puts families at center of economic recovery

Obama’s transition website features a family issues page with policy proposals that will boost family economic security here in Washington and across the nation. Among many other important changes to support working families, Obama proposes to:

  • Encourage states to adopt paid leave: His strategy is to “encourage all of the states to adopt paid-leave systems…provide a $1.5 billion fund to assist states with start-up costs and to help states offset the costs for employees and employers.”
  • Extend paid sick days to all workers: Noting that that “half of all private sector workers have no paid sick days and the problem is worse for employees in low-paying jobs, where less than a quarter receive any paid sick days” (exactly the case here Washington State!), Obama will propose requiring employers to provide seven paid sick days per year.
  • Expand the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA): Plans to cover businesses with 25 or more employees (instead of the current 50), and to cover more purposes including allowing: “leave for workers who provide elder care; 24 hours of leave each year for parents to participate in their children’s academic activities at school; leave for workers who care for individuals who reside in their home for 6 months or more; and leave for employees to address domestic violence and sexual assault.”

CNN interviewed Obama’s policy advisor Karen Kornbluh on these very proposals just a couple of months ago.

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