March 17, 2020

Wyden to Introduce Updated Emergency Paid Leave, Small Business Support Bill

Under new PAID Leave Act, all workers would be allowed to take advantage of 14 paid sick days & 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today announced plans to introduce a comprehensive emergency paid sick days and paid family and medical leave bill—fully funded by the federal government during this public health emergency—to provide additional support to workers and businesses during the coronavirus outbreak and future public health emergencies.

“Working Oregonians must not be forced into making an impossible choice between going to work and risking their health or their family’s well-being,’’ said Wyden, ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee. “This legislation would directly address the urgent need for workers and small businesses statewide and nationwide to have the paid sick leave that’s essential to respond to the devastating economic ripples created by the coronavirus public health crisis.”

The PAID Leave Act (Providing Americans Insured Days of Leave Act) would fully and quickly reimburse employers for all paid sick days and paid leave in 2020 and 2021. To ensure businesses do no need to wait for tax credits, the bill would only require employers to provide documentation to the Department of Labor (DOL) to demonstrate they paid out sick days or leave in order to receive reimbursement. After 2021, the bill would allow workers to accrue seven paid sick days and establish a self-sustaining family and medical leave insurance program for all workers.

For all employees and independent contractors, this bill also would:                                                                                                        

  • Provide 14 emergency paid sick days in the event of a public health emergency, including the current coronavirus crisis, reimbursed in full by the federal government.
  • Provide workers with 12 weeks emergency paid family and medical leave, fully reimbursed by the federal government.
  • Permanently ensure workers can accrue 7 paid sick days.
  • Permanently enact a paid family and medical leave program (Senator Kristen Gillibrand’s and Representative Rosa DeLauro’s FAMILY Act).

The PAID Leave Act is endorsed by the National Partnership for Women and Families, CLASP, Family Values at Work, Paid Leave for All, Center for American Progress, American Federation of Teachers.

Joining Wyden as original co-sponsors of the bill are Sens. Charles Schumer (D-NY), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI).