Minnesotans should be able to care for themselves and their families without jeopardizing economic security.

Paid leave comes with significant health and developmental benefits for children whose parents are able to access it, while helping families maintain a measure of economic security when needed most. However, many Minnesota workers, including working parents, don’t have access to paid leave, and low-wage, Black, Hispanic, part-time, and younger workers are more likely to go without it than their counterparts.

We believe all Minnesota families deserve a Paid Family and Medical Leave Program and earned sick and safe time. As one of three co-chairs of the Minnesotans for Paid Family Leave coalition, CDF-MN has worked with advocates and legislative champions to introduce the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act for the past four years in a row. Informed by a comprehensive, expert analysis, the Act creates a state-administered insurance program that would allow workers to take time to care for themselves or loved ones, including new children and seriously ill children, while receiving partial wage replacement.

While the state Senate passed a version of the bill in 2016, the state House blocked action that year. Similarly, lawmakers have not taken action on Earned Sick and Safe Time legislation that would allow all workers to accrue sick and safe time hours at work. In addition to our work at the state level, CDF-MN was a member of the St. Paul Earned Sick and Safe Time Task Force to help create change for workers and families at the city level, effective spring 2017.

During the 2019 legislative session we are hopeful to build on the progress we have made in recent years to have Minnesota join the handful of states and D.C. that have passed comprehensive paid family and medical leave program.