New York passes bold agenda for Working Families

Press Releases / April 1, 2016

Family leavePaid Family Leave and Minimum Wage Increase Are Big Wins for Women

April 1, 2016 – New York, NY – Today, our New York State leaders passed a budget agreement including Paid Family Leave and a minimum wage increase for all New Yorkers.

“New York’s Paid Family Leave policy will be a game changer for women, who disproportionately bear the brunt of care-giving responsibilities,” said Sonia Ossorio, President of the National Organization for Women – New York. “Securing Paid Family Leave in this year’s state budget is a tremendous win for New York women and families. Individuals will now be able to take needed time from work to care for a new child or sick family member without risking their financial security. As the strongest policy in the nation with 12 weeks of paid leave, we hope this will serve as a model and catalyst for similar action across the country. We applaud Governor Cuomo for making this a top priority in our state.”

The program will protect workers’ jobs and health benefits, and will allow up to 12-weeks of paid leave for workers to care for a new child (including adopted and foster children) or a seriously ill family member. With the longest benefit period, New York’s policy will be the most robust in the nation.

The budget deal includes a $15 statewide minimum wage increase that will be phased in over time. NOW New York President Sonia Ossorio said, “Raising the minimum wage will have an immediately positive and far-reaching impact on women’s economic status. Sixty percent of minimum wage workers across the state are women. The combined power of a higher minimum wage and job protections for family leave translates to critical advances for the women of New York.”

The National Organization for Women is the nation’s largest organization working to advance women’s rights and improve women’s lives. NOW New York aims to protect and promote reproductive justice, secure workplace equality, combat racism and homophobia, and end discrimination and violence against all women.