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BPC to Senate Committee: Americans Overwhelmingly Support Practical Paid Leave Proposals in the COVID-19 Era

Washington, DC – Today, in testimony to the U.S. Senate Finance Committee’s Working Group on Paid Family Leave, Bipartisan Policy Center Fellows Adrienne Schweer and Maggie Cordish made the case for pragmatic changes to temporary emergency leave provisions that would help Americans balance the unprecedented work and caregiving challenges during the coronavirus pandemic.

“A robust emergency paid family leave program should be a national economic priority,” Schweer said. “The bold and bipartisan Families First Coronavirus Response Act, enacted in March, has gone a long way to help workers, but excludes far too many from coverage.”

“American families are struggling to balance work responsibilities and the unprecedented family caregiving needs brought on by COVID-19,” Cordish said. ”Congress had the foresight to support parents facing reduced child care options, but left behind those with vulnerable adult dependents or newborn babies. We have to do more for our families.”

The Bipartisan Policy Center called upon Congress to better support the American worker and employers with three recommendations:

  1. Remove the 500-employee cap for the paid sick and paid family caregiving leave programs.
  2. Expand paid family caregiving leave to new parents and to those providing care to vulnerable adult dependents.
  3. Authorize a six-month extension to cover a second wave of the pandemic.

Read the full testimony