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California’s groundbreaking Paid Family Leave (PFL) program gives employees opportunities to care for ill family members and bond with new children – a program that has provided partial wage replacement to an estimated 1.8 million Californians over the last decade. As PFL marks its tenth anniversary, the state law is expanding to cover a broader circle of family members.

Secretary David Lanier of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency noted that a decade ago “California became the first state in the nation tooffer benefits to employees who take time off to care for a seriously ill child,parent, spouse, or registered domestic partner, or to bond with a newborn or newly adopted child. And thanks to legislation signed by Governor Jerry Brown last fall, we’re expanding that program to cover caring for a seriously ill grandparent, grandchild, sibling, and parent-in-law.”

The program is administered by the California Employment Development Department (EDD).

“When PFL was signed into law a decade ago, it signaled a recognition that employees at times have to make difficult decisions between family and work obligations, and we simply don’t want Californians to have to choose between being good parents and good employees,” said EDD Director Patrick W. Henning Jr.

“I’m proud of the dedicated work EDD staff have delivered over the last ten years in easing those decisions for about 1.8 million of our fellow Californians, and supporting their families’ needs.”

“California’s first-in-the-nation Paid Family Leave law has provided California families with economic stability during important family events, and has benefited California businesses and the state economy. Now it’s a model as a national conversation starts about how best to provide paid family leave across the country,” said Ann O’Leary, Vice-President and Director of the Children & Families program at Next Generation.


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