WASHINGTON – American Federation of Government Employees National President Everett Kelley today issued the following statement in response to the introduction Thursday of the Comprehensive Paid Leave for Federal Employees Act in the Senate:
“Providing federal employees with 12 weeks of paid leave to address all circumstances currently covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act would improve quality of life for workers while making the federal government a more competitive and attractive employer.
“Congress took a critical first step two years ago when it passed legislation providing federal workers with 12 weeks of paid leave for the birth, adoption, or foster placement of a child. This new legislation would extend that benefit to cover all FMLA leave, including care for close family members, serious employee health conditions, and issues involving military deployment. Employees would not need to exhaust their sick and annual leave before using this benefit.
“On behalf of the 700,000 government employees AFGE represents, I thank Senator Brian Schatz for introducing this legislation as a companion to the House bill introduced in January by House Oversight and Reform Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney. We look forward to working with them and the other congressional cosponsors to pass this important legislation into law and ensure no federal worker ever has to choose between a paycheck and caring for their family.”