2018 Family Leave Responses

As an elected official, will you support the creation of a statewide family and medical leave insurance program which would make parental and caregiving leave available to all Vermont workers and help level the playing field for small businesses?

As you may know, this past legislative session the Vermont legislature passed a bill that would have created a statewide paid family leave insurance program providing up to 12 weeks of leave at 70% wage replacement funded by a .136% employee payroll deduction. CA, NY, NJ, RI, WA, MA & D.C. all have PFML programs or have recently passed legislation to create a PFML program.


US Senate Candidates

Edward S Gilbert Jr - U.S. Senate, Statewide
Yes, as stated we need to return Economic Prosperity across all 14 counties of Vermont.  Presently Vermont is suffering due to a decade of stagnant economic growth compounded by lack of good paying jobs with full benefits.  I would support restoring families, allowing time for fathers to be home with new mothers, aging parents in need of support by children or family members. I support several alternative programs supporting families.

Folasade Adeluola - United States Senate, Statewide
As A Mother To A Child With Down Syndrome and A Licensed Insurance Agent, I Do Support Paid Family Leave For All Employees In The United States.


Attorney General Candidates

Rosemarie Jackowski - Attorney General, Statewide


Gubernatorial Candidates

Charles Laramie - Governor, Statewide
Yes with stipulations. Yes but will not mandate it though I would create incentives for companies doing this.

Christine Hallquist - Governor, Statewide
It's vital that parents and caregivers are not unfairly penalized or blocked from the workforce and just as vital that small businesses are allowed to succeed. As such I strongly support paid medical and family leave for all Vermonters. Were a bill similar to the one passed last spring to land on my desk, I would sign it without hesitation.

Em Peyton - Governor, Statewide
Yes. However I have a number of other ways than another tax to create money for this.  I do not support economic oppression of any kind. There are advanced manners of democratizing money, and simple manners of increasing the availability of direct credit   

Trevor Barlow - Governor, Statewide
Yes. I believe we need to enhance the quality of life for all of our citizens. Family leave is important as I believe having children is one of the most joyous and stressful times in a parents lives.  We would all benefit from lessening the stress on families and those who employ family members. Serious medical situations in a family can additionally cause great stress in and out of the workplace. We can enhance our Vermont tradition supporting fellow hardworking Vermonters during their times of need and make it easier for them to have a sense of security during these trying situations.


Secretary of State Candidates

Brooke Paige - Secretary of State, Statewide
As with all well intended social projects, family leave is a worthwhile concept however as proposed in the last Legislative session, I believe the current blueprint is unworkable as it has insufficient safeguards in place and the funding mechanism proposed is totally insufficient!


State Auditor Candidates

Marina Brown - Auditor of Accounts, Statewide
Yes. I would support even longer leaves.


State Senate Candidates

Alison Clarkson - State Senate, Windsor County District
Yes, I have supported and will continue to support Paid Family Leave

Andrew Perchlik - State Senate, Washington County

Ann Cummings - State Senate, Washington County
I have sponsored paid family leave bills for years. I voted for last sessions bill and will continue to do so.

Anthony Pollina - State Senate, Washington County
Yes. The bill passed last session should be strengthened.

Christopher Pearson - State Senate, Chittenden
Yes.  I've sponsored this bill for many years (since 2007, I believe). It's great to see this important issue coming to the front of priority list.

Christopher Bray - Vermont Senate, Addison
Yes. This is long overdue. Only the US, amongst developed countries, offers no such benefit. It will provide for opportunities for people to work with the peace of mind necessary to take care of one's family while also not losing essential income.

Debbie Ingram - State Senate, Chittenden
Yes. I have championed this legislation in the past and was very disappointed when the Governor vetoed it. I am determined to bring it up again if re-elected.

Jeff Kaufer - State Senate, Bennington County
If it's already been passed, what else is there to do?

Pam McCarthy - State Senate, Franklin
Yes. Though I wish that this would be executed at the Federal level, I don't believe we can wait. This is an essential benefit to many families, especially those with infants and/or frail elders.

Robert (Bobby) Starr - State Senate, Essex-Orleans
I will support a bill if it Is fair and equitable to all

Ruth Hardy - State Senate, Addison
Yes. As stated above, it is one of my policy priorities.


State House of Representative Candidates

Anne Donahue - State Representative, Washington-1
I believe we have much higher priorities to make Vermont affordable and level that playing field, with health care as the best example. The version that was passed in the House last year was highly inequitable, creating cost burdens for a benefit that lower paid employees within smaller businesses could never benefit from, since they had no assurance of getting their job back if they accessed the leave program. This is an example of a program that would be best offered through a national effort, since it creates economic stresses on businesses that hurts competitiveness with other states.

Avram Patt - State Representative, Lamoille-Washington

Ben Joseph - State Representative, Grand Isle- Chittenden
I have supported this program and will continue to do so.

Carol Ode - State Representative, Chittenden 6-1
YES. I voted for it last time and am very disappointed it was vetoed.

Chris Bates - State Representative, Bennington 2-1
I would support the creation of the bill.

David Yacovone - State Representative, Lamoille- Washington
Yes. This is very important to me, part of economic justice effort

Diana Gonzalez - State Representative, Chittenden 6-7

Emilie Kornheiser - State Representative, Windham 2-1
Yes. As a member of Rights and Democracy’s leadership committee and in my professional work with Building Bright Futures, I've stepped up in support of FMLA, not just to support families but as an essential tool to stabilize our economy and workforce. As MSA knows, any solutions we find in Vermont must specifically be adapted to our small business environment, and that will mean that FMLA must be held primarily by government rather than by individual businesses who absolutely do not have the capacity.

Frank Davis - State Representative, District 7-3
...that would have created... Yes, making living in Vermont with dignity is, for assuredly most of us, a no-brainer; we want and need these legislation's passed.

Frank Davis - State Representative, Orleans 1

Heather Juliussen-Stevenson - State Representative, Rutland 5-1

James O’Connor - State Representative, Benn-1
Absolutely oppose.

Jeremy Hansen - State Representative, Washington-1

Kari Dolan - State Representative, Washington-7
Yes. I support paid family leave as an inexpensive but important pro-worker benefit that is there when working people and families need it most.

Kate Larose - State Representative, Franklin 3-1
Yes! This is a key part of my platform.  

Kathleen Orion - State Representative, Chittenden - 2

Maida Townsend - State Representative, Chittenden 7-4
Yes, as I did last session.

Martha Allen - State Representative, Essex Orleans Caledonia
Yes! As a public school teacher for 30 years, I had access to both family and medical leave. I understand how important this is to families. We need legislation such as this to encourage young families to move to Vermont.

Marybeth Redmond - State Representative, Chittenden 8-1
Yes. We must achieve paid family leave in Vermont, as well as throughout the United States. It is unacceptable as one of the most developed nations on earth that we do not offer such provisions for our workforce. PFML also encourages women of child-bearing-age to enter the workforce and to continue working after the birth of children. We need every drop of available talent in our state armed with the resources to succeed in their working lives, which ultimately support employers and grows the economy.

Matt Birong - State Representative, Addison 3
I'm in!!!!

Maxine Grad - State Representative, Washington-7
Yes. I voted for it last session

Mollie Burke - State Representative, Windham 2-2
I am a strong supporter of this. It's unconscionable that the United States is one of I believe only two countries in the world to have no paid family leave policies. Just over the border in Quebec, paid family leave is extensive, perhaps a year. If we want to encourage young families to move to Vermont, and encourage the families who are here already to stay, we need to do more. Subsidized child care and paid family leave are essential elements of a sane society.

Nader Hashim - State Representative, Windham-4
Yes, I would support such a plan.

Neil Johnson - State Representative, Washington -7
This does not solve the problem of building stronger families, it only puts a bandaid on it. People need to save 6 months of income for general financial stability and plan financially and socially how they are going to raise their children, it's not a part time job. So this program will allow us to subsidize rich people and give people with no money skills a false sense of hope about the duties and financial responsibilities required to raise a child. Affordablility is the true answer, we aim to bring about home ownership for $600 per month, college tuition at 70% off, higher paying jobs and training, greener transportation at lower costs, think $10.,000 car the gets 50mpg, these changes will make long term positive developments for family unity and strength. This program does nothing but support lobbyist lead efforts that do not benefit the family and specifically the child.

Peter Anthony, State Representative, WASH - 3

Robert Hooper - State Representative, Chittenden 6.1
Support this completely.  Very sorry to see it get Scottgoated last session.

Sam Young - State Representative, Orleans-Caledonia
Yes. I was happy to lead sponsor of the legislation and will work to pass it again.

Sarah Copeland Hanzas - State Representative, Orange 2

Scott Campbell - State Representative, Caledonia-3
I think paid family leave is vital for all workers, especially lower-wage workers, and for building a sustainable economy. We need to attract and retain a skilled, qualified workforce, and addressing long-overdue needs like family leave is part of that.

Seth Chase - State Representative, Colchester 9-1

Tim Briglin - State Representative, Windsor-Orange 2
Yes.  I was a sponsor of the Family and Medical Leave bill that passed the legislature (and was vetoed by the governor) in 2018.  It will be a priority of mine to see a similar bill passed into law in 2019.

Tim Guiles - State Representative, Rutland-6

Tommy  Walz - State Representative, Washington-3
I fully supported and voted for the bill. Our proposal was reasonable, affordable, and gave working Vermonters protections they need when facing family illness or an addition of a child to the family.


Assistant Judge Candidates

Scott Norman Rosenthal - Assistant Judge Orleans County
I'd like to see a serious overall redistribution of wealth and resources. This requires action at the federal level.

Suzanne Brown - Assistant Judge,  Chittenden County
Paid family leave is important but not in the purview of an Assistant Judge in Family Court.

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