Having paid family leave is a smart business move
There seems to be some misunderstanding surrounding paid family leave. Two recent letters to the editor have mischaracterized it as legislation that is unfriendly to businesses. The proposed paid family leave bill (A3870/S3004) will not place a financial burden on employers. It will be 100 percent funded through employee contributions to the existing Temporary Disability Insurance system.
Multiple states have enacted paid family leave policies, and the opinion data is overwhelmingly positive. In California (which New York’s proposed bill improves upon), 92.8 percent of employers reported that paid family leave had a positive or neutral effect on employee turnover; 91 percent found positive or neutral impacts on profitability and performance; and 98.6 percent reported positive to neutral effects on employee morale.
Not surprisingly, lack of paid family leave disproportionately impacts women, and women with less means have the most at stake when they lack access to paid family leave. Not only is paid family leave the right move for New York to make, but it is a smart business move. Beyond that, the positive impact to infants who will have parental focus (freedom from the stress of potentially of losing their job) will pay dividends to our society.
The United States lags behind the rest of the industrialized world with regard to this matter. It’s time to make New York next and enact paid family leave.