Paid Family and Medical Leave

Passed in 2017 after an almost 20-year fight led by EOI and allies, Washington’s Paid Family and Medical Leave program offers much needed protections to workers needing time off to care for themselves or their families. Since its passage, EOI has worked with the staff of the new Paid Family and Medical Leave office to develop the program which will go into effect on January 1, 2020.

Workers will soon be able to take up to 12 weeks paid leave to care for a newborn or newly placed adopted or foster child, a serious health condition, a family member’s serious health condition, or a family member’s military deployment – with up to 18 weeks available in a year, depending on circumstances.

Taking time off to care for oneself or one’s loved ones without fearing a loss of wages or employment shouldn’t be a privilege. Soon, in Washington, it won’t be.

FEATURED PROFILE

Terri’s Story, or, Cancer Doesn’t Care How Responsible You Are

Terri did everything right. She and her husband raised three great children – now mostly grown. She was a loyal employee for 14 years and prepared for the future, buying into the short term disability plan her company offered and investing in a 401(k). She even decided it was time to get healthy and lost 30 lbs.

When her cancer diagnosis came, she had family support, a financial cushion, and the legal protection of the FMLA. But none of that proved quite enough to last through two years of treatment and three surgeries. Despite her years of hard work and responsible actions, one bout of seriously bad luck has left Terri worried about her family’s future.

In September 2013, after speaking with some co-workers, Terri became suspicious of symptoms she’d been having. She visited the doctor and after two biopsies learned she had cancer in both breasts. In October, Terri had a lumpectomy and eventually a double mastectomy. In total, Terri has needed to take 3 separate medical leaves from work to deal with her cancer

“It was the worst experience of my life” said Terri.

Read more…

Research Feed

A Fair Deal at Work
Paid Leave in Washington Fact Sheet

Know the difference between paid sick days and paid family and medical leave

Paid Family and Medical Leave
Responses of African-American Women to Washington’s Paid Family & Medical Leave Program

Equity Goals of Program and Potential Barriers to Equitable Access

A Fair Deal at Work
Details Matter

Paid Family and Medical Leave that Works for Working Families

Blog Feed

Paid Family and Medical Leave

March 27, 2020

Financial Support in the Age of Coronavirus

Our support systems are stronger, but still don't cover many modern job situations

Paid Family and Medical Leave

March 23, 2020

COVID-19 Federal Paid Leave Requirements

How do federal rules Interact with Washington's paid leave laws?

Paid Family and Medical Leave

March 6, 2020

Without Government Spending, Coronavirus May Cause Washington’s Economic Collapse

We’re facing potential economic disaster, with weeks or even months of disruption