February 05, 2018
PORTLAND, ME – Today, U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) joined leadership and employees at Avesta Housing in Portland to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Landmark legislation enacted in February 1993, the FMLA provides certain employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for certain family and medical reasons like the birth and care of a newborn child or the care of a family member with a serious health condition.
"For 25 years, the FMLA has helped workers respond to personal situations without having to choose between keeping their job or caring for their families," said Senator King. "However, there is still more to do. Access to paid leave to care for a newborn child or sick relative is vital to help Maine workers maintain a steady paycheck while attending to family responsibilities, and also increases a company's ability to retain their hardworking employees. On the 25th anniversary of the FMLA, I applaud Avesta's decision to implement a paid parental leave policy, and will continue working in the Senate to broaden access to paid family and medical leave."
Senator King has been outspoken in his support for the FMLA and has worked to build on its legacy to support paid family and medical leave legislation. In August, he announced his support for the Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act (FAMILY) Act, legislation that would create a social insurance program to provide up to 12 weeks of gender neutral paid family and medical leave for all private-sector members of the American workforce who have sufficient work history. Senator King is also an original sponsor of the Strong Families Act, bipartisan, bicameral legislation that would create a five-year, 25 percent tax credit for employers who voluntarily offer up to 12 weeks of paid family leave to employees. A version of the Strong Families Act with a two-year window was enacted into law in December 2017 as part of H.R. 1.
Avesta Housing is a 501(c)3 organization founded in 1972 and is committed to providing affordable, quality housing for people in need. Avesta recently adopted new paid leave policies and now offers paid Parental Leave to employees on FMLA leave for the birth, fostering, or adoption of a child.