Legislation Would Give Federal Employees 12 Weeks of Paid Parental Leave

July 1, 2018 9:48 AM , Updated July 10, 2018 6:12 PM
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Recently introduced legislation would give federal employees 12 weeks of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child.

The Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act of 2018 (H.R. 6275) was introduced by Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (R-VA).

Comstock said in a statement about the bill:

This legislation will provide federal employees with 12 weeks paid leave in the case of the birth or adoption of a child.

Today most large employers provide at least 12 weeks paid, and this is a competitiveness issue as well as a retention issue for the federal workplace to attract and maintain the top talent in the workplace.

Paid parental leave has been proven to help women remain in the workforce, lower infant mortality rates, improve infant health, and reduce depression and other postpartum mental health issues in women. Men who have paid time off upon the birth or adoption of a child are more likely to engage with their child, even after returning to work.

The federal government should match other large employers to remain competitive for the top talent necessary for our federal workforce. I look forward to working with my colleagues to secure the passage of this bill. My office provides 12 weeks paid family leave and this is a policy that I encourage all of my colleagues to adopt also.

Previous attempts have been made to introduce similar legislation, but they have ultimately failed to advance. One of the more recent efforts came last year when a bill was reintroduced by Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) that would give federal employees 6 weeks of paid parental leave. Comstock was a co-sponsor of that bill as well. It has not advanced as of the time of this writing.

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Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He enjoys writing about current topics that affect the federal workforce.