Milwaukee alderwoman proposes city employees should have 12 weeks paid parental leave

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Milwaukee Alderwoman Marina Dimitrijevic on Tuesday, Nov. 16, introduced a paid parental leave policy, which would empower City of Milwaukee employees with 12 weeks of paid parental leave.

“As the mother of two toddlers, it wasn’t long ago that I experienced the challenges of childbirth and raising a newborn. I know how critical this time is for a child’s development, a mother’s healing, and a family’s opportunity to bond – that’s why a paid parental leave policy is long overdue in Milwaukee,” said Alderwoman Dimitrijevic. “Under my plan, City of Milwaukee employees will have 12 weeks of paid parental leave, regardless of gender. But this is just the beginning. By setting a high standard locally, we can also increase pressure for a federal paid leave policy to give every new parent in America the same opportunity. Until the federal government makes paid leave a priority, we need to take bold action at the local level to help families succeed.”

According to a news release, currently, Milwaukee has no parental paid leave policy for city employees. Dimitrijevic’s plan would take the city from worst to first, giving Milwaukee the strongest paid leave policy in the state by providing 12 weeks of paid leave to new parents, regardless of gender. This plan would also bring Milwaukee’s policy in line with the federal government, which also provides 12 weeks for new parents.

“This plan is a bold investment in Milwaukee’s future that will give children their best chance to succeed. It’s a critical tool for reducing inequality and improving health outcomes for everyone in our city,” added Dimitrijevic.

The news release says, research overwhelmingly shows paid parental leave benefits new families by supporting early childhood development. Paid leave also improves outcomes related to poverty, health, and inequality. Parents who have benefited from paid leave policies report that they are better able to care for their newborn and are more likely to follow recovery recommendations from their doctor.

The file will be introduced during the Common Council meeting Wednesday, Nov. 18. 

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