Senior Staff Attorney Sharon Terman explains Family Medical Leave Laws:
A variety of federal and state laws—including the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, the California Family Rights Act, and the California Pregnancy Disability Leave Act—guarantee employees the right to job-protected leave from work to deal with a personal or family illness, pregnancy-related conditions, or to bond with a new child.
These laws also entitle workers to continued health insurance benefits during leave.
The California State Disability Insurance and Paid Family Leave Programs provide workers with partial wage replacement while they are off work.
Since 1983, the LAS–ELC’s Work and Family Project has advocated to protect the employment rights of poor families during periods of crisis, such as the serious illness of an employee or a loved one. LAS-ELC Senior Staff Attorney Elizabeth Kristen describes challenges facing working caregivers on "Inside E Street."
The tools we use include:
Advice and Information:
LAS–ELC provides assistance and legal advice to workers through the Work and Family Project Information line, toll-free in California 800-880-8047 or 415-593-0033 in the Bay Area.
The Work and Family Project represents workers whose family and medical leave rights have been denied. We provide direct legal services, from pursuing administrative complaints to litigating cases in state and federal court.
As part of the California Work and Family Coalition, the LAS–ELC participates in legislative efforts to expand workers’ access to family and medical leave. The Coalition recently drafted a Family Leave Toolkit to help workers understand and use family leave.
Public Education and Outreach:
LAS-ELC offers workshops and trainings for workers, advocates, and health care providers regarding the employment rights of poor families who are grappling with family or medical crises. We also provide self-help tools, fact sheets, and other reference materials in English, Spanish, and Chinese. In addition the US Department of Labor recently published "Need Time? The Employee Guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act".
LAS-ELC collaborates with a range of advocates and communities to identify and strengthen the common interests of persons with disabilities, LGBT people, women, people of color, immigrants, language minorities, labor unions, and working people with caretaking obligations.