ATLANTA — The Georgia House passed a bill that would provide three weeks paid parental leave for state workers and teachers, representing about 423,000 Georgia parents. Mica Whitfield, State Director of 9to5 Georgia, issued the following statement:
“9to5 Georgia applauds the passage of House Bill 146 as an important step in the process of achieving paid leave for all. As this bill moves to the Senate for consideration, we are pushing Georgia in the right direction with the bill’s inclusion of paid parental leave for State employees.
“We commend State Rep. Houston Gaines’ leadership in introducing this legislation, recognizing the importance of this issue for Georgia families and, along with the bill’s co-sponsors, advancing bipartisan legislative support for paid leave through the Georgia Statehouse.
“However, in our work with Georgia families, we’ve found that new parents need more than three weeks to welcome a new child, without having the financial burden of being required to return to work.
“9to5 urges lawmakers to expand the provision of paid parental leave beyond this initial step forward by adopting the standard 12 week model offered to federal employees. No one should have to choose between their family and financial stability and we are motivated to continue the fight for accessible and affordable paid leave for all Georgia families. We look forward to working with the Georgia legislature to move this work forward.”