LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Two L.A. City Council members Tuesday introduced a motion which would require that workers who take parental leave receive their full salary for 18 weeks.

Under the motion, co-sponsored by Nury Martinez and David Ryu, employers in L.A. would be required to ensure that their employees receive 100 percent of their regular salary when they take parental leave, with no drop in pay.

Under state law, when employees take parental leave, somewhere between 60 to 70 percent of their regular salary is covered by California Disability Insurance and/or Paid Family Leave. This motion would require employers to cover the difference, 30 to 40 percent, in order for workers to receive their full pay during those 18 weeks, which consist of “combined prepartum care, postpartum care, and bonding time with a newborn, adopted or foster child,” according to the motion.

Martinez and Ryu argue that such a policy would provide for both long-term economic benefits and

“Companies with increased paid parental leave benefits saw fewer employees leave the company, such as at Google, where the rate at which new mothers left the company was cut in half when additional paid parental leave was provided,” the two councilors said in a news release Tuesday. “Furthermore, employees who are offered paid parental leave are 39 percent less likely to need public assistance.”

If approved, the motion would be phased in over a period of three years depending on the size of the business. Large businesses would be required to implement the program within a year.

The plan also received the support of Mayor Eric Garcetti.

“Nearly every other country in the developed world guarantees paid family leave,” Garcetti wrote in a statement. “If Washington refuses to step up for children and parents, cities like Los Angeles will — because we know this is an essential investment in healthy families and a strong economy. I applaud Councilmembers Ryu and Martinez for leading the way, and look forward to working with them to make paid parental leave a reality for Angelenos.”

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is currently looking at whether to expand the state’s Paid Family Leave program from 18 weeks to six months, during which workers would receive partial pay.


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