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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: February 8, 2019 07:30 PM
From: Representative Stephen Barrar
To: All House members
Subject: Extending the Federal FMLA Benefit
The federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) has become a useful and necessary benefit for many Americans when dealing with a serious illness of a parent, child or spouse. But what if the family member that is ill is a sibling without a spouse or child? Or this sibling’s spouse or child is also ill and unable to care for one another? It is time that a meaningful change be made to the FMLA here in the Commonwealth.

In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation that would extend the federal family medical leave benefit to siblings, grandparents and grandchildren. Language in the bill is designed to ensure that no one “double dips” and takes leave time from the federal and state extension program. It would also limit the amount of time to six weeks instead of twelve and only apply in those instances where the patient has no living or able-bodied spouse, parent or child.

The impact on a business would be minimal but the positive effect it would have on the patient as well as the family member/caretaker would be enormous. This results in patients using the state less for a source of home assistance. Extending the FMLA to sibling, grandparents, and grandchildren when there is no other alternative is a “win” both for Pennsylvania and for the affected families.

Please join me by co-sponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as HB933