Paid Leave Solutions for Workers

May 29, 2020

As Congress searches for paid leave solutions that support workers who need a leave of absence, there’s an opportunity for a partnership between the private and public sectors. What’s essential is the ability for employers to provide coverage through private short-term disability income insurance or other private market tools.

Whether it’s childbirth, adoption, a family health crisis, or a worker’s own health crisis, workers shouldn’t have to choose between their paycheck and their loved ones. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the gaps in the national framework for wage replacement.

Our federal government responded quickly and appropriately to meet the short-term paid leave needs of workers who were unable to work due to state emergency orders and to support those that were unemployed suddenly and unpredictably due to the pandemic. After the crisis subsides, we’ll need to find a long-term, sustainable solution. 

Helping people care for their loved ones is life insurers’ most critical mission. As lawmakers consider federal solutions, they can look to the sector with a proven record of timely, vital wage replacement at a minimal cost to the employer or employee.

Workers shouldn’t be penalized for taking time off to care for their families when needed. Let’s continue the dialogue and work to find viable solutions that meet this fundamental need across America.

Lauryl Jackson

Lauryl Jackson is Vice President, Federal Relations for Financial Income Security and Diversity & Inclusion for the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI). Prior to joining ACLI in January 2020, she led government affairs strategy for the priorities of the pharmaceutical industry.