Duckworth Introduces Pregnancy Loss Legislation

By Benjamin Cox on July 21, 2021 at 12:03pm

An Illinois Senator has introduced legislation that would provide paid leave for women following a pregnancy loss.

Senator Tammy Duckworth introduced legislation yesterday to Congress that would grant three days of paid leave for women following a miscarriage, a failed adoption or surrogacy arrangement, an unsuccessful fertility procedure, or a related medical diagnosis.

Duckworth is familiar with the issue, as she suffered a miscarriage during her 2016 Senate campaign.

Currently, there is no federal paid leave program in the U.S. The Family and Medical Leave Act allows those who are eligible to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to care for a newborn, newly adopted child, or to care for oneself or a family member with a serious health condition.

Duckworth’s “Support Through Loss Act,” which she is introducing along with 7th District Massachusetts Democrat Representative Ayanna Pressley, would require employers to provide at least three days of paid time off after pregnancy or related loss. It would also direct the Department of Health and Human Services and the Center for Disease Control to provide additional support resources and public information related to pregnancy loss. It would also provide $45 million annually to the National Institutes of Health for research programs related to pregnancy loss.

The bill follows after New Zealand’s parliament who passed similar measures addressing pregnancy loss in March.