Gabriela and her son

Gabriela and her son

Have you ever had to think about a family and medical leave program? Did you ever look into the federal program to see if you would qualify?

I didn’t think about family and medical leave insurance until I was faced with needing to take time off for an extended amount of time for the birth of my son. Thankfully, my husband and I had savings, and I stayed home for a reasonable amount of time. But hearing stories from new moms that have to go back to work within a few days or weeks is absolutely heart-wrenching.

This means no breast feeding, less time for bonding, maybe skipping a few wellness visits (and immunizations), and if there was a c-section, a long and painful recovery. Every mom and dad deserves to spend some time with a new baby, and paid family leave gives every parent that opportunity.

So join me in supporting family and medical leave on February 5th, when the Washington State Legislature will hear a paid family and medical leave bill that would allow workers to take off up to 12 weeks off – at partial pay – for their own serious condition or to care for a new born or newly adopted child or sick family member. This system would be entirely supported by workers and employers with a shared premium. Each pays 0.1% of pay, or about $1.00 per week if you earn $50,000/year.

Please join us in Olympia on February 5th to tell the Legislature why you support paid family and medical leave – they need to hear your personal story. The hearing begins at 10AM, and will last for an hour or two. Tell them how a family and medical leave program would have helped you after childbirth or a chronic illness.

If you can attend or would like more information, please email me at if you can join us on February 5th.

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