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We are a non-profit state federation. Our membership includes women and men of every age, race, religion, political party and socio-economic background. We are a leading advocate on work-life balance and workplace equity issues.

In this section, you will read recent news releases and advocacy concerns as well as view our opinion editorials and letters to the editor. Members of the press who are writing about issues of concern to working women are encouraged to contact our Communications Committee at [email protected].

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The New York State Assembly passed the Women’s Equality Act

Author: Communications Committee/Saturday, March 15, 2014/Categories: General

The New York State Assembly passed the Women’s Equality Act (A.8070) on January 27, 2014. This was the second year that the Assembly passed this groundbreaking legislation that would help provide the women of New York State with protection from discrimination and injustice. Last year, the Assembly passed the Women’s Equality Act, only to have the State Senate fail to pass the same legislation.

The 10 Points of this legislation will:

  • Protect a Woman’s Freedom of Choice
  • Achieve Pay Equity
  • Stop Sexual Harassment in All Workplaces
  • Allow for the Recovery of Attorneys’ Fees in Employment and Credit and Lending Cases
  • Strengthen Human Trafficking Laws
  • End Family Status Discrimination
  • Stop Source-of-Income Discrimination
  • Stop Housing Discrimination for Victims of Domestic Violence
  • Stop Pregnancy Discrimination Once and For All
  • Protect Victims of Domestic Violence by Strengthening Order-of-Protection Laws

Before this bill can become law, the State Senate must pass the same bill, and then it must be signed by the Governor. Those who support this legislation must contact their State Senators, and let them know how important it is that they bring this bill to the floor of the Senate for a vote, and then vote to pass it. To find out who your State Senator is, go to the website http://www.nysenate.gov/ and enter your address.

On March 5, 2014, the New York State Assembly passed legislation that provides additional benefits and protections. 

The Paid Family Leave Act (A.1793-B) would enable all workers to maintain their employment and receive income while on leave to care for an elderly relative or child. While the federal Family Medical Leave Act provides for 12 weeks of unpaid leave to care for a sick relative, most employees cannot afford to take unpaid leave. This legislation would allow employees to earn some income during a brief leave. Employers would be required to purchase a paid family leave insurance policy, the cost of which would be offset by an initial weekly employee contribution of up to 45 cents.

Several bills were passed by the Assembly that would expand access to and affordability of child care. For more information on these bills see http://assembly.state.ny.us/Press/20140305/

These bills address such issues as the cost of co-pays, and payments to child care providers. By insuring that working people can have access to affordable child care, it makes it possible for them to maintain their employment, while caring for their children.

The State Senate has passed a Budget Resolution that supports Paid Family Medical Leave, and Subsidized Child Care. The same form of the legislation must be passed by both the Assembly and the Senate before they can become law.

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