Bill Would Give All VA Employees New Paid Parental Leave Benefit

Legislation has been introduced that would formally ensure that all VA employees would be covered by the new paid parental leave benefit.

Recently introduced legislation would ensure that the new paid parental leave law would apply to all employees at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The VA Family Leave Act of 2020 (H.R. 6306) was introduced by Congressman Phil Roe (R-TN).

Roe said in a press release about the bill that the new paid parental leave law was meant to apply to all federal employees who are covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act, but some VA employees were “inadvertently” left out of coverage of the law.

“The VA Family Leave Act of 2020 would close a loophole in the FY 2020 NDAA that inadvertently exempted doctors, nurses, dentists, and other healthcare professionals working in VA medical facilities across the country from the generous parental leave benefits provided in the law to other Federal employees,” said Roe. “Providing these hardworking men and women caring for our heroes with the benefits they have earned when they add a child to their families is unquestionably the right thing to do and I look forward to seeing this bill considered in Committee very soon.”

The VA had previously said that all of its employees would be covered under the new law even though AFGE had announced that Title 38 employees at the VA were among those excluded from the new law. Roe’s bill would codify this change into law should it be passed.

Some Federal Employees Not Eligible for New Paid Parental Leave Benefit

The situation with the VA employees is just a portion of some of the federal employees that were excluded from the new new paid parental leave law that is set to go into effect in October. Other federal employees that were excluded were TSA employees (except for screeners) and some FAA employees.

AFGE and NATCA seem confident that all federal employees will ultimately be covered by the new law, however.

About the Paid Parental Leave Law

The new benefit for federal employees was passed as part of the National Defense Authorization Act. It will provide 12 weeks of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child. Full details on exactly how the benefit will work will be forthcoming when OPM issues its regulations implementing the new law.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.