United

United

Thoughts on Finding Common Ground and Advancing the Common Good

Cory Booker

Our society claims to value children, but struggling mothers like Natasha get no paid family leave. The U.S. is the only developed country that doesn’t offer government-sponsored paid family leave. Almost all of the world’s nations—from Afghanistan to the Democratic Republic of Congo—offer this kind of support, but we don’t. Natasha’s son had a case of asthma that sent him to the hospital regularly. In an industry that offers workers no sick days (in which people regularly come to work ill and as a result spread their germs on our food because they can’t afford to stay home), where people have no paid family leave, or vacation days, a child’s illness is so much more than the minor stress and inconvenience my mother endured when I got sick. There is the added stress of how to pay a doctor or a co-pay, how to make rent if you miss a day’s work to stay home with your child, how to cope with not being there when your son, hospitalized for asthma, calls for his mother.

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