During the COVID-19 pandemic, paid leave emerged as a critical policy issue in state legislatures all over the country. Now, with the pandemic retreating in the rearview mirror, the paid leave landscape is changing, but the issue remains just as popular with state lawmakers nationwide.
While specific paid leave statutes related to COVID are sunsetting, lawmakers in at least 44 states have introduced more than 300 measures related to the issue since the beginning of 2023, reflecting the fact that paid leave as a policy issue had momentum with lawmakers even before the pandemic.
As Alison May, senior policy specialist for the National Conference of State Legislatures®, noted in a white paper published in the thick of the pandemic in the fall of 2020, paid leave had garnered “national attention and bipartisan congressional support in recent years,” even as the United States remained the only developed nation without a national paid leave policy.
Read the rest of this story at State Net Capitol Journal. Originally published June 30, 2023; used with permission.