Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act
The Federal Employees Paid Parental
Leave Act of 2009 (FEPPLA), H.R. 626/S.
354, would grant federal employees four
weeks of paid parental leave when caring for a
newly born or adopted child. Currently, federal
employees are not offered any paid leave
during this time. Under current law, new
parent(s) are only allowed up to 12 weeks of
unpaid leave and may use their annual and sick
leave to supplement the lost wages.
NFFE-IAM supports FEPPLA because federal
employees should not have to choose between
bringing home a paycheck and caring for their
The Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act of 2009 (H.R. 626/S. 354) would amend Title 5 of the United States Code, the Congressional Accountability Act, and the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by creating a new category of leave under FMLA. This new category would provide four weeks of paid leave to federal employees following the birth, adoption, or fostering of a child. In addition, the legislation would allow the Office of Personnel Management to increase the amount of paid leave to a total of eight weeks, based on consideration of several factors such as the cost to the federal government and enhanced recruitment and retention of valuable employees.
Under current law, federal employees who have completed at least 12 months of service are entitled to 12 weeks of leave without pay after the birth, adoption, or fostering of a child. Upon return from such FMLA leave, an employee must be returned to the same position or to an “equivalent position with equivalent benefits, pay, status, and other terms and conditions of employment.” Employees may get paid during that 12-week period if they use annual or sick leave they have accrued. The leave provided by this bill would be available only within the 12-week FMLA leave period.
Why Support the Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act?
The federal government currently provides no paid parental leave to its workforce, whereas many state governments and private companies already do.
If the federal government wishes to recruit and retain the nation’s best and brightest, it has to provide the highest quality benefits on the job market.
With the economy in such a diminished state, many federal employees cannot afford to miss a paycheck.
Often times, expecting mothers will use much of their sick leave for parental care purposes, leaving them without any residual leave to care for their newborn, or unrelated sickness.