Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Major victory for Naptime Activists!

Great news to share today -- New Jersey is on its way to becoming the third state in the nation to provide paid family leave for newborn and sick relative family caregiving.

This victory was won with a major push from MomsRising members. Look at the grassroots mobilization accomplished by this campaign:

MomsRising Members in New Jersey are on fire with activity to pass Family Leave Insurance. In the last 6 months alone, they have participated in on the ground lobbying, testified for committees in the Assembly and Senate, decorated and displayed baby Onesies, made hundreds of phone calls to their legislators, and sent tens of thousands of letters to their legislators. In addition, business owners at MomsRising signed a letter in support of family leave insurance, which will help small businesses provide this key benefit to their workers.

New Jersey legislators received over 63,000 letters on this issue (yes, that's 63 thousand!), over 50,000 coming since January 2008, prompting one staffer to say, "I can't believe how much we're hearing about this bill, it's incredible!"

This legislative victory epitomizes the reasons I am proud to be part of the leadership team at MomsRising.org.

Motherhood is the next logical frontier of feminism (whether or not we still call it that). The Second Wave of the 1960's-80's made "room at the top" for career women but failed to secure the social infrastructure parents need in order to work. How are women supposed to work without paid family leave, quality child care, or even job security to take a sick day? These issues affect men too, but we know all too well that Moms are disproportionately expected become caregivers when "life happens." Employment is a necessity rather than a choice for millions of working parents, many of whom live without a financial safety net, one family crisis away from bankruptcy. MomsRising also works toward goals that will benefit all families, from single Moms to stay-at-home Moms, including health care coverage for all children.

If we need to work state by state to get paid family leave, we can do it. If it takes 63,000 calls and letters, we've shown that it is possible. MomsRising has had active advocacy campaigns in Washington State and New Jersey, the two states that have advanced family leave legislation in the past year. I am so proud of this grassroots movement, if I had buttons they'd be bursting right now.

Will you help us continue to build an infrastructure that supports all families? Join MomsRising and find out what's next! You can also learn more by downloading the "Naptime Activist" edition of The Mojo Mom Party Kit
that I created in partnership with MomsRising.

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Blogger Amy@UWM said...

Congrats to you and the Momsrising team! Three down, 47 more to go. Completely agree that we now need to pick up where the feminists of the 60s/70s left off -- with the choice to work and pursue fulfilling careers, but without the support to do so.

4:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is the criteria for an employee to receive paid paternity leave?

4:21 PM  

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