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Democratic Municipal Officials Passes Resolution Supporting Paid Sick And Spousal Leave

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Board of Directors of Democratic Municipal Officials passes resolution supporting local action to ensure paid sick and spousal leave

Washington, DC – March 18th, 2015 – Democratic Municipal Officials’ (DMO) President Mayor Cindy Lerner (Pinecrest, FL) and the Board of Democratic Municipal Officials passed a resolution last Tuesday encouraging municipal action in support of paid sick and spousal leave. The resolution was introduced to the Board on the recommendation of the DMO Policy Council, chaired by Mayor Debbie Goettel (Richfield, MN).

The DMO Board of Directors gathered in Washington, DC at the National League of Cities (NLC) Congressional City Conference. Following the conclusion of the biannual DMO National Breakfast Meeting, the Board convened to discuss the association’s strategic goals and policy issues. The Board of Directors approved a resolution in support of action to guarantee paid sick and spousal leave, distinct from other paid time off such as vacation days, in the event of illness and to enable post-natal infant care. The United States is the only industrialized nation in the world that does not guarantee sick leave, and one of only two countries that does not offer some form of paid maternity leave.

The DMO resolution encourages local action on paid leave, and cites as a model federal legislation being introduced this afternoon by Senator Gillibrand (D-NY). Senator Gillibrand’s FAMILY Act would establish a national, gender-neutral paid family and medical leave insurance program.

“Our workforce should not have to choose between earning a paycheck and caring for a sick family member or new baby,” said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “Right now, just 13 percent of employed Americans have access to paid leave – we must do better. The FAMILY Act will establish a national, gender-neutral paid family and medical leave insurance program available to every worker in our country. We know this policy is smart for businesses, it is good for our economy and it is what’s right for families. I applaud the DMO for their leadership in championing this critical legislation to their 40,000 local officials across the country.”

“The assurance paid leave provides helps us achieve sustainable local economies and secures the health and well-being of families in our communities. We applaud Senator Gillibrand for introducing the FAMILY Act as a way to ensure paid leave nationwide,” said Mayor Lerner in regards to the national legislation that inspired the resolution.

DMO’s own resolution recognizes the importance of national and state legislation that improves on the current system. In addition, it stresses the importance of municipalities taking immediate action on paid leave; instituting payroll-supported leave funds for city employees, discussing the economic benefits with local business owners, and working with their state legislators to craft wider reform.

Democratic Municipal Officials (DMO) is the Democratic National Committee constituency association for local elected officials who personally identify as members of the Democratic Party. DMO represents over 40,000 mayors, city council members, and other municipal elected officials across the United States, and acts to move their priorities nationwide.