WASHINGTON, Aug. 4, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new state-by-state analysis shows that few states have expanded upon the federal Family and Medical Leave Act's (FMLA's) unpaid leave protections or adopted other policies to help expecting and new parents who are employed. Released in advance of the 23rd anniversary of the day the FMLA took effect on August 5, 1993, Expecting Better: A State-by-State Analysis of Laws That Help Expecting and New Parents is the most comprehensive analysis to date of state laws and regulations governing paid leave and other workplace rights for the country's expecting and new parents.
The analysis was conducted by the National Partnership for Women & Families. It grades states based on their passage of select laws that offer greater leave or workplace protections than federal law provides. The results:
- California is the only state to receive an "A."
- The District of Columbia and New York earn grades of "A-."
- Eleven states earn grades of "B."
- Ten states earn grades of "C."
- Fifteen states earn grades of "D."
- Twelve states receive grades of "F" for failing to enact a single workplace policy to help expecting or new parents.
"Despite some meaningful progress, too many working families struggle at the very time they should be focused on giving children their best possible starts in life. People in too few states are guaranteed paid leave and the other workplace protections they urgently need," said National Partnership President Debra L. Ness. "At this time when women are both caregivers and breadwinners, and when voters want and need supportive workplace policies, too many lawmakers are letting them down. America's families expect and deserve much better."
The poor grades are striking, Ness continued, considering women make up nearly half of the country's workforce and 68 percent of children live in households in which all parents are employed. As Expecting Better argues, the nation's public policies have not kept pace with the changing demographics and pressures affecting families, workplaces and our economy – and low-wage parents and parents of color suffer disproportionately.
Eleven states and the District of Columbia improved their grades since the 2014 edition of Expecting Better.
"Our new study shows that progress is possible. It is wonderful that some states are showing real leadership by establishing standards that provide vitally important help to workers and families while helping pave the way for national change," explained National Partnership Vice President Vicki Shabo. "But sadly, most states are not doing nearly enough. People's ability to meet the dual demands of job and family should not depend on where they work or what job they hold. All lawmakers should commit to strengthening existing family friendly policies and adopting new ones."
The National Partnership and hundreds of organizations are calling on Congress to pass the Family And Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act, which would establish a paid family and medical leave insurance program; the Healthy Families Act, which would set a paid sick days standard; and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which would help combat pregnancy discrimination.
Expecting Better is available, along with state-specific graphics, at NationalPartnership.org/ExpectingBetter.
More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/expecting-better-new-study-lauds-advances-but-gives-27-states-grades-of-d-or-f-for-failing-to-support-new-parents-in-the-workplace-300309413.html
SOURCE National Partnership for Women & Families