Poll: Many Californians Unaware of Paid Family Leave Program
The poll, commissioned by the California Center for Research on Women and Families and the California Work & Family Coalition, was conducted in October 2014 and included 1,010 respondents (Next Generation release, 1/14).
Background on Paid Family Leave Program
In September 2013, Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed legislation (SB 770) to expand California's Paid Family Leave program to include workers who take time off to care for seriously ill grandparents, grandchildren, siblings and in-laws.
The program allows eligible employees to take up to six weeks of partially paid leave from their jobs annually and receive 55% of their wages for the time they take off. The measure requires workers to provide a doctor's note stating that their relative needs care.
Funding for the law comes from the state disability insurance program, which includes employees contributions (California Healthline, 7/1/14)
Overall, the poll found that awareness of the state's family leave program was lower in 2014 than it was in 2011. Specifically, 43% of respondents in a 2011 Field Poll said they were aware of the program, compared with 36% in 2014.
Awareness declined among almost all major voter groups. For example, awareness among:
- Latino voters dropped by 13% from 2011 to 2014;
- Women dropped by 11%; and
- Voters with a high school education or less dropped by 10% (Field Poll, 1/14).
However, of respondents who were aware of the program, 77% said they would be likely to take advantage of paid family leave if necessary (Next Generation release, 1/14).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.