(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee applauded an announcement from the U.S. Department of Labor Women’s Bureau that Washington state will receive a grant to research and analyze how paid leave programs can best be implemented. The Washington State Employment Security Department will receive $247,000 to study the feasibility and impacts of the Washington Family Leave Insurance Act of 2007.
“No one should be forced to choose between their paycheck and taking care of their family during a medical crisis,” Senator Murray said. “This announcement is great news for Washington state’s efforts to expand paid leave, and the grant will help administrators understand how to best implement effective programs that work for families and our economy. I am proud that Washington state is leading the way in working to expand access to paid leave programs, and I’m going to keep fighting in Washington, D.C. to move forward with pro-family policies that would reward, not punish family members for taking care of themselves and loved ones.”
In 1993, Senator Murray led the fight for the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which ensures most workers are able to take time off from work to attend to family and personal medical needs, without the fear of losing their jobs. She has also long supported the Washington Family Leave Insurance Act, passed by the state legislature in 2007. Earlier this year, Senator Murray introduced the Healthy Families Act to expand access to paid sick days, and has been fighting to get a vote on the Senate floor on the legislation.