Parental Bereavement Leave (The Farley-Kluger Initiative to Amend the FMLA)

109,250 Letters Sent So Far

I, the undersigned, support the need for a Parental Bereavement Leave Act as a way of extending coverage and existing benefits allowed by FMLA to employees that have experienced the death of a child.

It is my strong opinion that the death of a child is one of the worst experiences that anyone can endure. I find it unacceptable that the death of a child is not included as a protected reason to qualify for the benefits that are set forth in the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993.

As your constituent, I encourage you to give this issue serious consideration and support The Sarah Grace-Farley-Kluger Act/ The Parental Bereavement Act in either the House (HR2260) or Senate (S1320) to make the necessary modification to the Family Medical Leave Act of 1993. Since the existing FMLA defines a child as anyone under the age of 18, verbiage should be added to allow bereaved parents to qualify for these benefits.

I support Kelly Farley and Barry Kluger in their efforts to make these necessary changes and allow the time needed to begin the healing process.

The Farley-Kluger Initiative is proud to have the support of such organizations as the Polly Klaas Foundation, the National Association of Social Workers, American Counseling Association, the Elisabeth-Kubler Ross Foundation, Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA), First Candle, The Grief Recovery Institute Educational Foundation, Parents of Murdered Children (POMC), The MISS Foundation, Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Inc., The JED Foundation, Blue Star Families, Gold Star Mothers and Fathers, The Sarah Grace Foundation for Children with Cancer, The Children's Bereavement Center of Miami, National Students of AMF, American Academy of Grief Counseling, National Alliance for Grieving Children, Red Means Stop Traffic Safety Alliance and The American Institute for Health Care Professionals, to name a few.

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FMLA needs to add support for this, how can you not take time to heal, please get this changed.
I, too, have lost a child and know full well the devastating aftermath. Parents should be afforded a reasonable amount of time before having to go back to work. It is humane and necessary. This country needs to move forward in not only grief support but family support legislation in general. Thank you.
As a bereaved mother and member of The Compassionate Friends, I support this change. For 13 years I have sat with many bereaved parents and going back to work has been a significant topic and very stressful. We need time to grieve (and not the allowed 3 days), to process, and to heal. Adding additional stress of having to return to work further complicates attendance and productivity for employers. Society deals with loss as a means to move on and get over it mentality.

Losing a child is hard to imagine for those who have not traveled this journey. The very core of a parent is shattered and we are left to put pieces back together which takes time, support, love, compassion, patience, and understanding.

I want to also acknowledge the impact to surviving siblings who suffer significantly with the death of a sibling and for many, the absence of a parent (s) as the family unit struggles to find how to live with this hole in their life.

Let's give people time to grieve in healthy ways instead of increasing stress which will only further exacerbate mental and physical wellness and can lead to more unintended consequences down the road. In my professional field, I witness the unintended consequences of increased mental health symptoms, self-medication, inability to make decisions, and many more.

I was blessed with a wonderful boss who paid my full salary for four weeks, allowed me to come back part time, and when I had my difficult days at work, let me leave early (even years after the death of my daughter). This is very rare in companies and the FMLA would provide this opportunity for healthy grieving.