By Shane Smith

As New Jersey lawmakers, families and advocates gathered at the Statehouse today to celebrate the fourth birthday of the state’s Family Leave Insurance (FLI) program, we think it’s a good opportunity to take a look back at this historic initiative. The legislation, which was passed into law in May 2008, has made it possible for tens of thousands of New Jerseyans to take time off from work to be with newborn or newly adopted children and family members in need of medical care — without worrying about how to pay their monthly bills.

Several sponsors of the bill were on hand for today’s celebration, including Senators Stephen Sweeney, Loretta Weinberg and Linda Greenstein, and Assemblyman Nelson Albano. The event was organized by legislators, the New Jersey AFL-CIO and the NJ Time to Care Coalition, a diverse group of over 70 organizations – including NJPP — that worked to raise awareness and helped push for the legislation’s adoption.

FLI allows most workers to take up to six weeks off to care for a new child or a sick family member. Workers are entitled to two-thirds of their weekly wages up to a maximum in 2012 of $572.

In the three years since the FLI program began operating, over 81,000 claims have been made, for a total of more than $202 million in worker-funded payouts.


Similar Posts