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Labor Leaders, Working Women Celebrate 20 Years of the Family and Medical Leave Act

February 5, 2013

“The Family and Medical Leave Act was an important step forward in helping working Americans juggle the dual demands of work and family," said CWA President Larry Cohen. "It recognized that workers need time for family responsibilities, whether it’s to care for a new baby, an ailing parent or other concerns.”

Our milestones:  

  • It took at least ten years of work by unions, women’s organizations and other progressive groups, but when the Family and Medical Leave Act was signed into law in 1993, it made a big improvement in the lives of working women and men.  
  • It wasn’t until 2010 that flight attendants and airline crew members received that same benefit.
  • Today, the FMLA covers only about half of the workforce, leaving more than 75 million workers with zero protections under federal law.  We still have a lot of work to do to better support working families.

Read what other labor leaders and working women have to say about the 20th birthday of the FMLA at