January 2018 Newsletter

The Family and Medical Leave Act Turns 25! Join #FMLA25

On February 5, the FMLA is turning 25 and we have a lot to celebrate in California! Twenty-five years ago when President Clinton signed the Family and Medical Leave Act, it sparked a movement that we are part of building today – the movement for job-protected and paid family leave for all Americans. The FMLA provides 12 weeks of job protection for workers when they take time to bond with a new child, care for a seriously ill family member or care for their own serious health condition. While it has benefitted millions of workers and families, it still leaves over 40% of US workers out. The FMLA is unpaid and covers only workers in businesses of 50 or more who have been on the job for over a year. But we’re making progress! On February 5, we celebrate California’s recent expansion of job protection for new parents (SB 63). And we join our national partner, Family Values @Work and their grassroots network of 27 state coalitions to celebrate and call for the expansion of the FMLA and the passage of the federal #FAMILYAct – paid leave for all. State leaders of the FV@W network and activists and elected officials from all over the US will join the National Partnership for Women and Families on February 5 in the Capitol to celebrate this important anniversary. Join us on #FMLA25.

Coalition Members Star in Paid Family Leave Press Briefing

Los Angeles: On January 11th, Coalition members Sophia Cheng from ROC LA and Donna Benton from the USC Family Caregiver Support Center spoke (see video!) about the 2018 expansion of California’s Paid Family Leave at a news briefing with Ethnic Media Services. Mercury LLC, the firm contracting with the Employment Development Department (EDD) to run a statewide media campaign on California’s Paid Family Leave, organized the briefing targeting Chinese, Spanish, and Vietnamese language press. Cheng and Benton joined a panel of speakers including an EDD staff member to talk about the increase in the benefit, the recent expansion of job protection, and their personal connection to Paid Family Leave as parents, caregivers, and advocates. There will be a similar briefing in Northern California on February 1st. Check out a sample of the news coverage in Spanish and Chinese. The Coalition has been organizing and working in collaboration with the EDD to build an infrastructure of awareness and support for new immigrant workers taking Paid Family Leave.

Sophia_Cheng_Donna_Benton.jpgSophia Cheng and Donna Benton speak to the Press about CA Paid Family Leave expansion


The Coalition Calls for Increased Funding for Survivors of Domestic Violence

Coalition Director, Jenya Cassidy, joined the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence (CPEDV), state lawmakers, and advocates in a rally in the State Capitol on January 4th to call for increased funding in the state budget for services that would promote well-being and safety of domestic violence survivors and their families. The goal of this campaign is to ensure emergency services while expanding funding to programs aimed at both prevention and healing. This year, the Coalition will partner with CPEDV to raise awareness about the needs of domestic violence survivors which include access to paid sick and safe days, job-protected leave to seek legal help, and Paid Family Leave for the well-being and economic security of survivors and family members. At the rally, Jenya Cassidy spoke on the need to ramp up efforts to expand and enforce workplace supports for survivors: “No survivor should fear losing her or his job when they need to take time off for their own safety, to seek medical attention, legal services or housing.” Learn more about the CPEDV campaign here.

Coalition Director, Jenya Cassidy, speaking at CPEDV rally on January 4

Care about Caregivers? Join the Family Caregiver/Aging Workforce Subcommittee!

The Coalition will be working with Human Impact Partners on a research project looking at family caregivers and Paid Family Leave. This is in conjunction with our campaign to win support for working caregivers in 2018. If you are interested, please e-mail us at info@workfamilyca.org. We’ll be sharing updates here and on the website.

Pay Your Membership Dues Today! Individual Members Welcome

If you haven’t paid dues for 2018, please do today! Your dues payments support the most important work of the Coalition – convening diverse organizations and individuals together from across the state to win family-friendly workplaces for all California workers. You can now join as an organization or individual by signing in here. Members receive regular updates, action alerts, and are listed on the website and can vote at the annual Statewide Meeting. Learn more about membership here. Thank you to everyone who has contributed dues this year! We appreciate your support!

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