Women's Foundation Releases Initial Findings on Paid Family Leave Research

Fact Sheet Identifies the Economic Benefits of Helping Working Women & Their Families

Kansas City, MO -- Women's Foundation today released initial findings from research on paid family leave.  The research is being conducted in partnership with the University of Missouri Truman School Institute of Public Policy and is focused on paid family leave and its impact on families in Missouri and the U.S.

Key initial findings include that:

  • Paid family leave can reduce the percentage of those who receive public assistance or food stamps in the year following a child’s birth
  • Paid family leave does not negatively affect business outputs, but encourages women to stay in the workforce.
  • Despite there being economic and health benefits to family leave policies, only four states have adopted statewide paid family leave programs that go beyond the Federal Medical & Leave Act (FMLA).  
  • Paid family leave allows fathers to take time to care for their children.  

The full fact sheet of initial findings is available here.

"Our research shows that real opportunities exist to advance workplace policies such as paid family leave in order to economically empower women and their families," said Wendy Doyle, President & CEO of Women's Foundation. "We'll continue to study the issues women face and support policy solutions that improve workplace policies and strengthen our economy."

Women's Foundation has been supportive of administrative and legislative solutions that would expand paid family leave options for women and their families.  For example, Women's Foundation supported Missouri House Bill 2228, sponsored by Rep. Jay Barnes (R - Jefferson City) that would allow state employees ten consecutive work days of paid leave upon the birth or adoption of a child.  The bill was voted out of committee but did not make it through the General Assembly before the end of the 2016 legislative session.

A poll released in July 2016 by Public Policy Polling shows a majority of Missourians support paid parental leave as well.  When asked if they support or oppose allowing state employees ten consecutive work days of paid leave upon the birth or adoption of a child, nearly two-thirds (65%) of Missourians supported this policy solution.

Women's Foundation and the Institute of Public Policy plan to continue studying the issue of paid family leave as one of many economic indicators affecting the status of women in Missouri.  The research findings help identify real issues facing Missouri women and their families, and the Women's Foundation then works to find solutions.

Women’s Foundation promotes equity and opportunity for women of all ages, using research, philanthropy and policy solutions to make meaningful change.  More information about the organization can be found at www.Womens-Foundation.org.