NEW YORK — Today, we celebrate the reintroduction of the Healthy Families Act by U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D – WA) and U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D – CT), in both the Senate and the House. The Healthy Families Act is a critical piece of legislation that would allow workers to earn paid sick days to care for their health, as well as the health of immediate family members (such as a partner or child). National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) Interim Executive Director Sung Yeon Choimorrow issued the following statement in response:
“Paid sick leave is critical to Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) women, transgender and gender non-conforming communities. No one should have to choose between paying the bills and caring for their health, but too often that is the reality that many AAPI workers have to face. NAPAWF believes in policies that cultivate caring communities that allow AAPI families to thrive — regardless of what state they live in or where they work. The Healthy Families Act is a step in that direction, helping support the third of AAPI working women who currently lack access to paid sick days.
“The Healthy Families Act is being reintroduced during a time when health care more broadly is under attack. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the Republican Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal plan would cause 14 million people to lose health insurance over the course of a year — and 24 million by 2020. AAPI people enrolled in the ACA at high rates and stand to lose critical coverage under the repeal plan. Poor health care policies disproportionately impact women of color, low-income women, transgender and gender non-conforming people and immigrants. AAPI people who live at the intersections of these identities need policies like the Healthy Families Act. NAPAWF continues to advocate for the health and economic security of AAPI families, knowing that paid leave means little if AAPI people do not have the insurance necessary to access that care.
“Our vision of reproductive justice is one where AAPI workers have the necessary resources and support to define and make decisions regarding their bodies, families, and communities. The Healthy Families Act moves AAPI women closer towards that vision.”
The National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) is the only multi-issue, progressive, community organizing, and policy advocacy organization for Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) women and girls in the U.S. NAPAWF’s mission is to build a movement to advance social justice and human rights for AAPI women and girls.