San Francisco Passes Fully Paid Parental Leave Bill

Gay parents (Eris Risbern / Associated Press)
Eris Risbern / Associated Press

San Francisco could soon become the first city in the nation to provide both parents with six weeks of fully-paid parental leave after a birth or adoption.

The measure, which was unanimously passed by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, will now require the signatures of Gov. Jerry Brown and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. Both have indicated they will sign.

“We need to stop forcing parents to make the terrible decision about whether to bond with a child or whether to put food on the table,” Supervisor Scott Wiener said shortly after the measure passed in City Hall.

According to the local CBS News affiliate in San Francisco KPIX, intense negotiations inside City Hall reportedly resulted in several amendments that were more lenient on small businesses, and to which Mayor Lee agreed.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, some government sector workers and some private employees, particularly those who work in the tech industry, are currently provided with up to six weeks of paid parental leave.

Local Fox affiliate Fox 5 notes that the new law, if approved, would require the State of California to cover 55 percent of the cost, with businesses that have 20 or more employees covering the rest.

Other states that guarantee partial paid leave for new parents include Rhode Island, New Jersey, New York and California.

Businesses with more than 50 employees will begin implementing this new law starting in January of next year. Businesses with 35 to 49 workers will be required to start in July, and employers with 20 to 34 workers will have until January 2018.

Despite the amendments to the bill, the move could mean trouble for small businesses that are already facing an uphill battle with the coming $15 minimum wage hike. Small and privately-owned businesses are opposed to the move as it will allow for employees who work as little as eight hours a week, and who have worked for a total of 100 days, to receive the fully-paid leave.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz.



Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.