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Democrats Push For Paid Family And Medical Leave

Susan Walsh
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington last month.

Democratic lawmakers on both sides of the Sound want President Donald Trump to enact the nation’s first paid medical and family leave policy.

The proposed law would guarantee 14 emergency paid sick days to every worker, and provide coverage for up to three months for personal or family medical leave.

Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro from Connecticut says the coronavirus response package that President Trump signed into law last month falls short. 

“The administration left out – as has been pointed out – tens of millions of workers from access to meaningful paid leave days or longer-term paid leave, including our frontline health care workers and first responders. It's unacceptable.”

DeLauro says 14 days of paid sick leave is important to cover the 14-day isolation period recommended after exposure to the virus.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand from New York is a co-sponsor of the legislation. 

“Public health experts have been telling us to stay home for weeks. And we're seeing the benefits in real time. Now it's time for us to make sure every American worker can actually take that advice.”

Gillibrand says too many low-income workers have to choose between their paycheck and the health of their families. The bill would pave the way toward a permanent national program that provides paid leave to all workers in the future.

Read the latest on WSHU’s coronavirus coverage here.

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Desiree reports on the lives of military service members, veterans, and their families for WSHU as part of the American Homefront project. Born and raised in Connecticut, she now calls Long Island home.