Dozens of supporters of a controversial proposal for the nation’s most generous family-leave law, including parents, small-business owners and union members, urged city lawmakers Tuesday to pass the measure supported by a majority of the D.C. Council.
“We’re here for all of the obvious reasons,” said Jamie Smith, of the Chevy Chase neighborhood, who had her 10-month-old son, Adam, bouncing on her lap at Tuesday’s council meeting at the Wilson Building. “It’s just the right thing to do.”
Seven of the council’s 13 members co-introduced the proposed law Tuesday that would give every D.C. resident as much as 16 weeks of paid family leave.
The measure, developed with the help of the Obama administration, would allow residents to take paid leave following the birth or adoption of a child, to care for a terminally ill relative, or for just about any life-changing event in between.
The broad new benefit would be paid for by a tax on D.C. employers of up to 1 percent of employees’ salaries. Business leaders warned that could be hurtful and put them at a competitive disadvantage regionally, but D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson (D) moved to streamline a review of the proposed law, keeping it before his committee and therefore one step from a councilwide vote.
Full story: Washington Post »