Nearly every Mainer will at some point face extraordinary circumstances that necessitate extended leave from work.
Whether it’s a joyous occasion such as the birth of a child or more challenging times such as illness or death of a parent or grandparent, Mainers need to be able to focus on their families. Yet currently, the vast majority of working Mainers lose their income when they take family or medical leave.
The United States is one of the few countries in the world without a national paid family and medical leave program. Six states have enacted paid family and medical leave laws, and Maine legislators will consider such a proposal this year.
Mainers shouldn’t have to choose between spending time with their newborn and paying their rent, or between putting food on the table and caring for their aging parents. A statewide paid family and medical leave policy would solve this problem. It would empower Mainers to better care for themselves and their families.
LD 1410, “An Act To Create Paid Family and Medical Leave Benefits” is the most comprehensive of the family and medical leave bills before lawmakers today. Under the bill, workers would pay a small amount of their paycheck into a fund. In return, they would be eligible for up to 20 weeks’ worth of paid family or medical leave.
If enacted, Maine would have one of the best paid family and medical leave programs in the United States.