Senator Marco Rubio introduced a bill Wednesday that would allow parents to use their Social Security benefits to finance their paid leave.
The bill, called the Economic Security for New Parents Act would let parents use funds from their Social Security benefits early in order to get two months of paid leave. The parents would then delay receiving their Social Security benefits by three to six months once they retire. The benefits can be transferred between partners, including stay-at-home parents.
It is the first new paid family leave option since the Family and medical Leave Act of 1993, which was a major part of President Bill Clinton's agenda during his first term. The 1993 act gives 12 weeks of unpaid leave for employees who need to care for a family member.
"There's nothing we can do for our children that's better than allowing their parents to spend more time and be more involved in their lives, especially from their early days," Rubio told CBS this morning in an interview last year. "I think it's wrong and we've all seen this -- people that work somewhere, and they have a child and after more than two weeks of a caesarean section or three weeks of giving birth, they have to hurry back to work because they can't afford to miss one paycheck."
The bill wouldn't require parents to take from their Social Security, but it gives families more options to choose from when caring for children.