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Small Necessities

Family Leave for Small Necessities | Click here to download the Fact Sheet

Working families need flexible leave policies for small necessities such as school conferences and medical appointments.

Family and work patterns have changed dramatically in recent decades, yet workplace policies have not kept pace. Nearly 4 in 5 of today’s families (78%) are two-income households, where both spouses work for pay. Two thirds of mothers (65%) with children under age six have entered the workforce. One quarter (25%) of Americans report significant eldercare responsibilities, many of whom are forced to reduce their work hours or take time off to provide care for an elderly relative.

Flexible family leave policies for small necessities such as school conferences and routine medical appoints offer working family members a way to take care of family responsibilities without risking their jobs. In one survey, 41% of working parents said they had missed medical appointments or delayed treatments for their children because they did not have access to vacation, sick, or other leave benefit. Missing a child’s medical appointment or delaying medical treatments place children’s health at risk.

Family leave for small necessities strengthens families, businesses, and the economy.

Flexible family leave policies for small necessities increase employers’ ability to recruit and retain the best employees, improve employee productivity and morale and decrease turnover and absenteeism.

  • Employers rank leave for school functions as the work-life program most effective in reducing unscheduled employee absences. (2003 CCH Unscheduled Absence Survey, Oct. 2003)
  • Employer productivity and profits increase when employees feel they can balance work and family responsibilities. (Bravo, Ellen. The Job/Family Challenge. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. New York. 1995)

And it is good for the students as well. Research shows that student achievement improves when parent involvement in school increases.

Everyone benefits when workers are able to balance job obligations and family needs. Providing family leave for small necessities so they can attend a child’s school activity or take them to a medical appointment or treatment not only improves outcomes for children and families but also raises worker morale and productivity. Providing “time to care” means strong families, strong workplaces, and strong communities.

It's time for workers, business and goverment to come together to create a winning situation for everyone. It's time to for all New Jersey workers to have family leave for small necessities!