Allison Guevara : A federal Family Act makes sense (December 28, 2013)

By: Allison Guevara, Santa Cruz Sentinel 

In Bronnie Ware’s “Top Five Regrets of the Dying,” dying patients lament not being present with their children and loved ones when it mattered. Heeding these insights in the New Year, many of us will resolve to spend more time with our families. Yet, for many in the United States, this will take more than personal resolve.

Countless people in the country work hard every day, but are one accident, diagnosis or new child away from financial hardship or devastation because they have no paid family and medical leave.

As a Californian, I am proud and grateful to say it is different here. I was able to take several months off work when both my children were born thanks to State Disability Insurance and California Paid Family Leave, which has been shown to have a positive impact on families’ financial stability, children’s health, and businesses’ bottom lines, while reducing reliance on public assistance. Beyond the numbers, though, there is the immeasurable satisfaction in sharing this precious time with my children — what love and life are all about. Everyone deserves this.