House and Senate Democrats (and Progressives, too) are trying to hammer out a universal paid family leave bill. But the governor still wants a state employee plan into which other Vermonters could opt-in.
"Beth Fastiggi, commissioner of the Department of Human Resources, testified before committee members and explained how state employees can benefit from the lean program that ensures workers can take time off and still be compensated at 60 percent wage replacement for six weeks. The voluntary program would allow time off for personal illness, the birth of a child, an adoption or to care for a sick family member. “For our state employees we have pretty generous sick-leave plans, but we also have a lot of employees that are newer, that don’t have that accumulated leave,” she said. “So we still see people that either have to take unpaid leave or choose not to care for a family member. This is a way that I think we can attract and retain some of the newer employees.”
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