Paid Family and Medical Leave

WHEREAS, nearly all workers need to take time away from work at some point  to deal with a serious personal or family illness or to care for a new child; and

WHEREAS, laws providing paid family and medical leave allow workers to meet those needs without jeopardizing their economic security; and

WHEREAS, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides unpaid family and medical leave, but most U.S. workers cannot fully access FMLA because they cannot afford to take unpaid leave from work; and

WHEREAS, the percentage of women working full-time and acting as the sole or primary earner in their household has increased exponentially; and the percentage of men desiring paternity leave, time to bond with their newborn child and to play an active and equal role in their child’s care has also increased; and

WHEREAS, despite these changes in traditional gender roles, care work for children and ailing parents and other family members still falls disproportionately on the shoulders of women; and

WHEREAS, the United States is the only industrialized nation that does not provide paid maternity leave to its citizens; and

WHEREAS, women will never be fully equal in the workplace until we normalize pregnancy and family care work, prioritize work/life balance and provide subsequent support and accommodation; and

WHEREAS, the Teamsters Union as a representative of the broader movement in support of the rights of all workers believes it is right to set standards in federal  and state law to ensure a basic level of fairness and dignity for all work and workers.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED at this 29th International Convention that the International Brotherhood of Teamsters will support federal legislation like the Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act which mandates paid family leave  for U.S. workers.