Family Medical Leave Act

June 18, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Posted in after death?, Grief, Jake, life after loss, Love, Sawyer | 4 Comments
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According to the US Department of Labor the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA):

“Entitles eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons with continuation of group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions as if the employee had not taken leave. Eligible employees are entitled to (among other things):

  • Twelve work weeks of leave in a 12-month period for:
    • the birth of a child and to care for the newborn child within one year of birth;
    • the placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care and to care for the newly placed child within one year of placement;
    • to care for the employee’s spouse, child, or parent who has a serious health condition;
    • a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the essential functions of his or her job

The problem is once the family member dies there are often little or no benefits.  When Jake died I had a c-section and could not return to work for 6 weeks.  The ironic thing was that after he died all I wanted to do was go back to work because being on maternity leave with no baby was beyond awful for me.  Evan’s work was extremely understanding and kind.  He ended up missing about a month of work – the 2 weeks Jake was alive and then the 2 weeks after his death.

When Sawyer suddenly died Evan again missed 2 weeks of work.  Again, we were very fortunate that his work was so understanding.  I know that is not always the case.  Dealing with the death of your child and the stress of an employer not giving you time off is too much for anyone.

Bereaved father, Kelly Farley, is taking action to fix this issue.  He has created the Parental Bereavement Act (Farley-Kluger Initiative).  It is a petition to modify the existing Family Medical Leave Act.  The objective of Petition is the following:

“Modify existing FMLA to expand coverage and existing benefits to employees that have experienced the death of a child.”

If you would like to support this modification of the FMLA please click this link to sign the e-petition.   I have already signed it!


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  1. I can’t believe this isn’t already a done deal!

  2. Thanks for sharing the information about this–sounds like Kelly Farley can/will make a difference in a lot of people’s lives!

  3. Done!

  4. FMLA has so many shortfalls. I lost a two day old infant, but I wasn’t working at the time, so this never even crossed my mind. I am SO VERY SORRY for both of your losses. Hugs to you and I will share this and sign the petition!

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