Immediate Release
April 30, 2019
Press Contact: [email protected] 

Paid Leave Advocates Should Focus on Returning Resources & Decision-Making to Parents
FAMILY Act Would Hurt, Not Help, Low-Income Families

Washington, DC — Today “Strolling Thunder” comes to D.C. to advocate for federal policies they believe will help parents like the FAMILY Act, which would create a new federal entitlement program to offer paid leave to new parents. Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) has been at the forefront of the policy debate to offer fair and flexible options for new parents, developing the Earned Leave policy approach that several pieces of legislation are based. IWF president Carrie Lukas issued the following statement on the paid leave debate in advance of Strolling Thunder:

“Congress should think about the future and try to do more to advance the interests of babies and the parents who raise them. But we know that families are very diverse in their needs. A government program to help one family may backfire on others. That's why it's important that, rather than creating one-size-fits-all government entitlement programs, policymakers ought to focus on returning resources and decision-making power to parents.  

“One way to do that would be Earned Leave, which gives parents access to some of the Social Security benefits they have already earned after they have given birth or adopted a child. That way parents who need help can opt to get it, but without requiring new taxes or shifting costs to other families–such as families that are making sacrifices to keep a parent home full time.  Similar, we shouldn't have government pouring money into daycare centers–and taking money from taxpayers of course–when many parents prefer other care options. That's not fair. We want parents to have options and make decisions that make sense for them and their children.”

For more information on how entitlement-based paid leave programs like the FAMILY Act would hurt, not help, click here. To learn more about IWF’s Earned Leave policy proposal, visit


Independent Women's Forum is dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities.