Monday, February 5, 2018

The #FMLA was enacted 25 years ago today!

For 25 years, the Family and Medical Leave Act has provided key protections for workers.

Paid leave is a necessity for working families. I took advantage of California Paid Family Leave after my baby was born. During that 12 weeks, I bonded with my baby by breastfeeding him as often and as long as possible; I also built a very good milk supply.

By the time I went back to work when my little one turned 3 months old, I had two gallons of breast milk stored in my freezer. The working environment I returned to was, unfortunately, very unfriendly to breastfeeding mothers. I went through a long, exhausting process of fighting just for a reasonable pumping space and a harassment-free office, which caused me to be stressed out with my milk drying up. Luckily, I was able to continue exclusively breastfeeding my little one with my stored milk supply. When I was about to use up that storage, I left my job and became a freelancer. I was relieved and my milk supply came back. My little one was exclusively breastfed till the end of six months.

Experts agree that breastfeeding is baby’s best start. I wouldn’t be able to give my little one that best start without Paid Family Leave. It's time to build on that progress and fight for a comprehensive paid leave program for all working families.

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