Report: U.S. Can Learn From World on Implementing Paid Family, Medical Leave

We have many things to be thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day, but unfortunately widespread access to paid family and medical leave isn’t one of them.

Only three states have paid family and medical leave laws, and some companies have adopted them. But the “United States’ lack of a national paid family medical leave program makes it an extreme outlier among all other advanced economies, according to a report issued last week by the Center for American Progress based in Washington, D.C.

We should look beyond our shores for answers, says the report, says the November 19 report, titled Administering Paid Family and Medical Leave, Learning from Domestic and International Examples.

While the United States lags behind the rest of the world on the issue of paid leave, there is no compelling reason why it couldn’t create a national paid family and medical leave program, the report says, citing examples and best practices from other countries that the United States can draw upon to develop and implement paid leave. The report outlines the three broad types of structures for ensuring access to paid leave that have been used by states and other countries, and explains how they could function in the U.S.

Those three structures are:

  • Employer requirement programs, in which businesses are responsible for providing paid leave;
  • Social insurance programs, in which risk and resources are pooled to provide a fund for wage replacement during leave;
  • Publicly funded programs, in which government resources are utilized to provide workers with paid leave.

You can download the report from this link.




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