HARTFORD, CT - Governor Ned Lamont is applauding the General Assembly’s labor committee for voting today to approve legislation he introduced that will establish a paid family and medical leave program in the state. The concept is gaining momentum, the governor said, because people understand that workers shouldn’t need to struggle with a choice between their jobs and their health, a new child, or a difficult family situation.
“Working families are the backbone of our state, and supporting them will strengthen our economic footing and make Connecticut a stronger place to live, work, and do business,” Governor Lamont said. “Adopting this initiative means that workers who need to take time off for a new baby or recover from illness are not punished financially, and businesses do not risk losing good workers during those emergencies. I particularly want to applaud the co-chairs of the labor committee, Senator Julie Kushner and Representative Robyn Porter, for their advocacy in advancing this bill in the legislature. We’re seeing increased interest in approving this program because people are continuing to see how it will strengthen our state and our families.”
Under the proposal, a program would be established that provides workers who need to take time off of work to care for a new child, their own serious medical condition, or a serious medical condition of a family member with a portion of their salary for up to twelve weeks. It also protects those taking such leave, regardless of the size of their employer, from being fired or otherwise penalized by their employer for taking leave under those circumstances.
The program, which has been designed based on actuarial models, will be funded at no cost to Connecticut businesses by having workers contribute a small percent of their income to a Family and Medical Leave Insurance Trust Fund.
The legislation is Senate Bill 881, An Act Establishing a Paid Family and Medical Leave Program.