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  1. “Never Be Unprepared Again”: The Case for Paid Leave

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    This blog post references a webinar held on May 14, 2021. The recording can be viewed online by clicking here.

    Voices partnered with the Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy Virginia and Main Street Alliance to highlight the advocacy opportunities for paid family leave in Virginia. View the recording of the webinar from May 14. Throughout the pandemic we’ve heard from families that access to paid leave makes a significant difference when choosing between keeping their families safe and a paycheck. We’ve also heard from small businesses, like child care programs, that paid leave was a benefit they couldn’t afford to give staff. Right now we have the perfect opportunity to advocate for paid leave to be adopted by Congress and the Virginia legislature so that we will never be unprepared again.

    The Case for Paid Leave for All Families in Virginia

    Most workers in Virginia do not have access to paid family leave, particularly the workforce at the frontlines, those employees who are predominately women and women of color. To ensure strong family connections and the health and safety of young children, we know families can benefit from paid leave. The Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy Virginia is leading the charge to ensure Virginia’s state lawmakers and Congressional representatives champion paid family leave.

    Learn more about the Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy Virginia and review the stories of Virginians who needed paid leave, or even share your own story here.

    Paid Leave and Small Businesses

    A state or federal paid leave program could also be a boost for small business owners in helping to reduce costs associated with employee turnover and providing resources so that the financial burden doesn’t fall primarily on the employer. During the webinar, our partners at Main Street Alliance shared evidence of how paid leave can benefit small business and what small business leaders can do to advocate for paid leave to ensure that no small business, like a child care provider, is left out from offering paid family leave to employees.

    Small businesses that wish to learn more about paid leave or advocate for paid family leave in Virginia can connect with Main Street Alliance.

    Tax Credit Resources for Small Business

    Small business leaders should also make note of these tax credit resources that include refundable and retroactive tax credits to small businesses for employees who had to take leave due to COVID-19. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) includes resources for small business to receive refundable tax credits to cover their employees’ leave due to coronavirus related needs.

    Highlights of this tax credit include:

    • For businesses under 500 employees & self-employed who offer paid sick or family leave
    • For COVID-related medical, child care and family leave
    • May be eligible for fully reimbursable credit
    • Available retroactively for 2020 & until Sept. 30, 2021

    Read more from the US Treasury Department’s guide to accessing paid leave credit.

    Contact your Congressional offices to support paid leave now!