Posts Tagged: health care Results 6
Good news for families everywhere, no matter how much the moms and dads are leaning in. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) just introduced a Senate bill that would create a national paid family leave policy.
The legislation, called the Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act, or FAMILY Act, would provide up to 12 weeks of paid leave each year to qualifying workers for the birth or adoption of a new child, to help a seriously ill immediate family member or if the worker falls seriously ill his or herself. In these cases, workers will receive benefits equivalent to 66% of their monthly wages, with a cap of $1,000 per week. The money would come through an insurance plan similar to Social Security and would be administered through the Social Security Administration.
Around the 1992 election, like the political junkie-in-training I was, I walked around my grade-school wearing campaign buttons featuring the dynamic duo of Jewish female California Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, plus new First Lady Hillary Clinton. It was the Year of the Woman, a historic moment for women in politics — and a backlash to the Anita Hill fiasco — that hasn’t been replicated since.
The debate over birth control has made many of us think about how much money we as women spend on our reproductive health care — between birth control pill co-pays, visits to the gynecologist, cancer screenings, and all the necessary pre-natal care. Because of issues attendant with our fertility and reproduction, insurance companies have regularly charged women more — a practice that’s supposed to end under the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act (but won’t, if it gets repealed).
Like many other feminist political junkies this morning, my emotions were sent back and forth.
At first I was dismayed by the announcement that President Obama had agreed to a compromise (or was it an “accommodation”) on his smart policy that would have required employers, even most religiously affiliated ones, to consent to employee insurance plans that included free contraception.The Catholic Church has been raising a huge fuss about this — and the media has largely taken its side — and so the fear was this would be a full capitulation.
The Slate folks recently had an online spat about Congress’s idea to help cover the cost of health care with a 5% tax on elective cosmetic surgery. On the main site Christopher Beam argued against the tax, using studies to show that, despite assumptions that this would only affect the rich, one-third of the people getting plastic surgery make under $30,000 a year, while 86% make under $90,000. He also makes the case that better-looking people are often more productive and higher earners.
Meanwhile, Jessica Dweck, over at Slate’s women’s-interest blog the XX Factor, argues that there is nothing wrong with the so-called “botax.” She thinks that this would be more akin to a sin tax, as opposed to a payroll or an income tax, and best serves as a discouragement to questionable behavior. Dweck writes: