PLEASE NOTE: ON MONDAY APRIL 7, 2008 THE NEW JERSEY LEGISLATURE GAVE FINAL APPROVAL TO THE PAID FAMILY LEAVE BILL. GOVERNOR CORZINE HAS PROMISED TO SIGN THE BILL INTO LAW. PAID FAMILY LEAVE WILL BECOME EFFECTIVE IN JULY 2009. MORE DETAIL TO FOLLOW.
On Monday March 3rd more than a dozen members and staff from Local 108 converged on New Jersey's State Capital Trenton to participate in a joint Labor/Time to Care/New Jersey Citizen Action Lobby Day. The purpose of the intense Lobbying effort was to pass Paid Family Leave Insurance in the State Senate.
The members and staff met with several State Senators, and the watched from the State Gallery as the Senate debated the bill. The Family Leave Insurance bill passed mostly along party lines by a vote of 23 - 15. (Twenty one votes are needed for passage.)
Local 108 president Charles N. Hall Jr. expressed pride that the Local 108 delegation was the largest of any union. President Hall said “Paid family leave is a great idea whose time has come. Local 108 members came out to support this valuable new program because otherwise the State Senators hear from lobbyists and businesses, not the people that really matter, our members and the working families."
Family Leave Insurance will allow workers to take up to six weeks paid leave to care for a newborn or sick relative. Unpaid Leave is already available to most workers, but few can afford to take it. Under the new law, recipients will be entitled to collect up to 2/3 of their salary (up to $524 per week) from a state insurance fund paid for by the employee. The worker contribution to the fund will be up to .64 cents per week. It will take effect in 2009.
On March 13th Family Leave Insurance passed in New Jersey State Assembly by a 46-30 vote. It was amended in the Assembly and must now go to the Senate for a final vote. New Jersey's Governor Corzine has expressed his support.
To learn more about this landmark legislation and find out what you can do to help pass Family Leave Insurance in New Jersey, visit the New Jersey Citizen Action website: newjerseycitizenaction.org