Paid family medical leave is a critical component of reproductive freedom, and NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon is proud to have worked in coalition to pass the most progressive paid family and medical leave law in the country!
“In 1991, as an advocate for the Women’s Rights Coalition, I first began working on Paid Family Leave. Now, we can finally tell parents that they no longer will have to worry about losing their pay when they are having a baby or need to care for a loved one.” – Governor Kate Brown
Everyone, regardless of their circumstances, deserves the stability and security to decide when and if to become a parent. Paid leave provides those who give birth the time needed to heal from childbirth, families with time to bond with their new babies; and working people with the time necessary to care for sick or injured family members.
Caring for a family is important work, and shouldn’t mean compromising our economic security. Our workplace and public policies have not kept pace with the growing number of working parents. We are behind the rest of the world as it relates to Paid Family and Medical Leave; the United States is one of only a few countries in the world that does not provide paid maternity leave to working mothers, and one of only a few rich nations that does not guarantee the right to paid leave for fathers or workers who are providing care for seriously ill family members. We are proud to have passed the most progressive paid family and medical leave policy in the country to fill these gaps and ensure that everyone has time to care. Specifically, our bill:
- Gives 12 weeks of paid time off to new parents, victims of domestic violence and people who need to care for an ill family member or themselves;
- Makes Oregon the first state to pay low-income workers 100% of their wages when they’re off, with weekly benefits capped at around $1,215;
- Makes nearly all workers in the state eligible for the benefit, including those who work part time;
- Recognizes that families come in all shapes and sizes, and uses an extremely inclusive definition of who counts as a family member, extending the definition beyond blood relatives.