USA for UNFPA Statement on Paid Family Leave

Hafeja helps her mother with domestic duties. © UNFPA Bangladesh/Sumaia Akter 

USA for UNFPA stands with elected officials and activists in the United States advocating for a federally mandated paid family leave policy. Individuals everywhere should be able to care for their loved ones when they are needed most, no matter what. 

USA for UNFPA firmly believes that women have the right to not only determine whether or not they become pregnant and to deliver their babies safely, but also to bond with their newborns and recover from childbirth without fear of losing their jobs or falling into debt. Paid family leave also allows fathers to bond with their newborns and to share the weight and joy of caregiving. 

The current lack of such a policy hits low-wage workers the hardest as only 8 percent of low-wage workers have access to paid family leave.  Access to paid leave can reduce financial insecurity and stress for everyone during times that can already be difficult.  

No matter someone’s job or income, they should be able to be healthy and spend time with their children and families. Being a new parent can be a joyful and wonderful time when mothers are given time to recover from childbirth and both parents can adjust to new responsibilities. 

USA for UNFPA believes that everyone should be able to care for and enjoy their children, no matter what. And that when new parents are given paid leave, they are healthier and we all benefit.  

Dana Kirkegaard
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