At some point in our lives, nearly all of us will need to take time away from a job to address a loved one’s or our own serious illness, or to welcome a new child into our family. In this report, GCPI synthesizes research on paid leave and makes recommendations for designing a national paid leave policy that advances equity and accomplishes three interrelated goals:
Allows all workers to provide necessary care for themselves and their families;
Supports better health and child development outcomes for workers and their families; and
Ensures the financial stability of workers, their families, and their employers.
This analysis finds that block grants (characterized by capped amounts of federal funding to states and other entities paired with expansive flexibility for how the funds are spent) are fundamentally ill-equipped to support basic living standards compared to other structures, especially those that meaningfully guarantee access to adequate benefits or services. Specifically, block grants struggle to respond to need, can be less accountable to program goals and to the people who participate in the program, and can exacerbate inequities–especially racial inequities.
This working paper outlines the ramifications of taking away Medicaid, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and housing assistance from those who do not document meeting new work and community engagement requirements. The paper underscores how proposals that take away basic assistance from people who don’t meet work requirements are ill-informed, ineffective, inefficient, and inequitable, while alternative policies would produce far better outcomes.