Yes. If an employee is terminated or laid off from his position by no fault of his own, he is entitled to collect unemployment insurance benefits. A furlough or lay off from a government position due to the current shutdown in Washington is no different.
In today's economy, many workers are concerned about job security. However, when an illness arises in a family, a worker can be forced to take unpaid leave leaving them concerned about having a job to return to. A recent article published about unpaid leave and the need for changes in the system could be relevant for Wisconsin workers in a similar situation.
Many workers with families often worry about becoming sick or their children becoming sick. Having to take unpaid leave can run the risk of putting a family in a financial struggle due to lost wages. The idea of employers being required to allow employees sick days with pay has been taken up in many states. However, some employers see paid sick days as too costly for their companies, and some locations which adopted the policy, including a Wisconsin city, have reversed the decision.
A 41-year-old woman took time away from her employer in order to donate one of her kidneys to her 22-year-old son. The woman believed she would be able to return to her job, but the company the woman worked for fired her for taking too much leave time. Unfortunately, the Family and Medical Leave Act may not apply to the woman's situation because the woman's employer may not employ enough workers for it to be applicable. Even though she is currently jobless, the woman says she would make the choice to help her son all over again.
A recent spat between a female Fox News anchor who had just returned from maternity and a talk show host has revealed that some people are not familiar with the Family and Medical Leave Act and the benefits applicable employees are entitled to under the Act.
According to a report created by Human Rights Watch, the United States lags behind 178 other countries that have mandatory paid time off after childbirth. While the United States does have the Family Medical Leave Act, the federal law only offers unpaid leave rights for new parents. In the United States, state laws may supplement the federal Family Medical Leave Act by providing additional time off or paid time off for eligible workers. Regarding federal law, the Human Rights Watch report entitled, "Failing its Families" says the United States is an "outlier" when it comes to paid maternity leave.
The state of California's family medical leave program is getting high marks from researchers who have studied the law since its passage almost a decade ago. The state of California's family medical leave program compliments the federal Family Medical Leave Act and provides additional benefits the federal law does not provide. Despite what pro-business advocates said before the passage of the law, the state law's impact has been minimal on businesses according to researchers.
Federal employees will receive a new option on how to use their sick time and unpaid leave time under the Family Medical Leave Act. Federal employees will be able to exchange 26 weeks of paid sick time for unpaid leave under the Family Medical Leave Act to care for family members who have fallen ill from communicable diseases. The benefit can also be used to take care of family members serving in the military who have become ill or injured.
The mayor of Anchorage, Alaska has requested that the Alaska state legislature remove the state's family and medical leave act. The request would not affect Alaska state residents covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act. Alaska's state family and medical leave act gives public employees an additional six weeks of leave beyond what the federal law allows.