As Congress races to finalize a new round of stimulus for the nation, stricken at the moment with the winter surge that epidemiologists predicted, workers are under threat of losing access to paid emergency leave as well as paid sick days. According to the National Partnership for Women & Families, allowing such provisions to expire would be a grave mistake.
In a press release, the National Partnership warned that, although there is some funding for child care and expanded unemployment, losing the flexibility provided by the FFCRA emergency leave provisions enacted in the spring would be extremely detrimental to workers facing school closures and an increased risk of Covid-19 exposure as the winter progresses. As we have pointed out, the FFCRA has provided much needed protections and assistance to workers struggling to handle family emergencies as well as employment issues affected by the pandemic.
The National Partnership’s statement also highlights how abandoning these protections would impact poor and working mothers as well as minorities disproportionately. We will be keeping an eye on developments here and echo the concerns noted by the National Partnership.