POLL: Should Congress require companies to provide paid family and medical leave from work?


Last week, President Obama signed an Executive Order requiring federal contractors to provide paid sick leave. More on that here. The Department of Labor has a roadshow and social media campaign, through which it is touting the benefits of paid family and medical leave. And the Family and Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act is currently pending in Congress. This bill would provide create a family and medical leave insurance program.

As the debate over government-mandated paid sick leave continues, Patrick Kulp at Mashable reports here that over 200 faculty members from 88 institutions across the country, including MBA programs at NYU, Harvard and Wharton, have signed this open letter calling upon Congress to adopt a national paid family and medical leave policy.

Paid leave may be good for employees.

Among the benefits of paid leave, the educators argue that employees “experience a stronger sense of control, less stress, and are more efficient, engaged and productive at work. Workers feel greater loyalty and commitment to their organizations and improve their leadership skills.”

Paid leave may be good for employers too.

The open letter also touts cost-savings for businesses, claiming that paid sick leave improves employee retention. For example, in “high-wage, high-skilled workers in fields including technology, accounting and law, turnover costs can amount to 213 percent of workers’ salaries.” Further, the faculty members note that “across all occupations, median turnover costs are estimated to be 21 percent of workers’ annual wages.” Moreover, some employers may achieve a cost savings.

Among those who offer paid leave for its employers are the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Google, and DLA Piper.

What do you think?

Poll time.

Would you support the government requiring that your company provide a modest number of paid family and medical leave days to employees? Vote here.

  • As much as we would like to think otherwise, one size does not fit all. Paid leave is a great benefit, and while I believe an employer should provide it if able, not all can.