OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) – The push for paid leave was in full force Monday evening over at the Schwertfeger Shelter at Wheeling Park.
A statewide campaign called “Paid Leave Works for WV” was the topic and supporters held a picnic to try to garner support at the federal level for paid family and medical leave legislation.
Advocates, local leaders and even some local politicians were on hand to speak about the benefits of more paid family leave for residents in the Mountain State. One of the goals of the picnic was to send postcards to West Virginia Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito, who will soon be voting on some pending legislation in Congress.
Organizers tell us that more paid leave is a popular issue among voters.
“Paid leave is broadly popular. We’ve been talking to West Virginians all over the state and we found that almost everybody has a paid leave story, whether it’s having a new baby, having an illness of their own, or having a care giving need, maybe for an aging parent or a child. It’s something that touches almost everybody.”Kelly Allen, Executive Director of West Virginia Center of Budget and Policy
“We work in kind with our employer, like happy employees makes for better employment. And we’re just as important to the agency, or the company or the business as the products that they produce. So we have to be taken care of as employees as well, and shed this idea that us sacrificing comfort, and sacrificing time with our loved ones, or enjoying things that we care about is noble. It’s actually harsh working conditions.”Ron Scott Jr., Cultural Diversity and Community Outreach Director for the Wheeling YWCA
We’ll be following the progress of paid family leave legislation moving through Congress, so stay with 7NEWS and WTRF.com for updates.