ST. PAUL, Minn. – On Thursday, the Senate passed the final version of the bill to establish a statewide Paid Family and Medical Leave (PFML) bill championed by Senator Alice Mann (DFL-Edina). The legislation will give workers access to paid leave for parental bonding, their own medical condition, to care for a family member, for a qualifying exigency, or safety leave event.
“Across the country, states have implemented and benefited from a Paid Family and Medical Leave program. Today, this transformational bill to implement a statewide PFML program passed and will put Minnesota on track to becoming the twelfth state to implement paid leave. This bill creates a safety net for workers, leading to increased business productivity, higher employee morale, better recruitment and retention of skilled workers, and reduction of costs from employee turnover. This life-changing policy will improve lives and support people during their most vulnerable times, whether you are recovering at home from emergency surgery, bonding with a child after birth, or taking care of a loved one after an accident. This bill will ensure that no Minnesotan will have to choose between sacrificing a paycheck and the welfare of their loved ones.”
Earlier this week, Senator Mann had emergency surgery to remove her gallbladder. She is currently recovering at home and was not able to be physically present for Senate debate on the Conference Committee Report. Senator Erin Maye Quade (DFL-Apple Valley) presented the Conference Committee Report on the Senate floor in her stead.
“It was a privilege to take Senator Mann’s legislation across the finish line. She is a tireless advocate for workers and families, and this bill’s passage is a testament to her dedication and collaboration with legislators, advocates and experts throughout the session. Minnesota’s Paid Family and Medica Leave program will help thousands of workers maintain their financial stability while they take care of their needs as a human, or those of family member. I am so proud to be her colleague and look forward to this bill’s passage into law.”
Eleven U.S. states and Washington D.C. have passed and implemented a Paid Family and Medical Leave program. The United States is one of a few countries worldwide and the only industrialized country that does not guarantee paid leave. The Paid Family and Medical Leave program would allow Minnesotans to receive up to 12 weeks of benefits relating to serious health conditions or pregnancy; and up to 12 weeks for bonding, safety leave, qualifying exigency, or family care. If a worker seeks to use both types of leave in a single year, their total amount of benefits would be capped at 20 weeks.
The bill passed in the Senate on a vote of 34-32 and will now go to the Governor to be signed into law.