Paid Family and Medical Leave Popular Among Michigan Voters

LANSING — Polling shows that paid family and medical leave legislation is extraordinarily popular with Michigan voters. An assortment of polls taken over the past few years show not only is the issue popular with Michigan voters but is popular across the country.

Some polling highlighted in a recent release by Governor Whitmer show:

  • A Pew Research survey from May 2023 found that 99% of Americans said spending time with family is one of the most important things (73%), very important (18%), or somewhat important (8%).
  • Michiganders have been in support of paid leave for years. In 2015, a poll from Denno Research found 86% of Michiganders support paid sick time.
  • Nationally, paid family and medical leave has strong, bipartisan support that has held steady for years.
    • Data for Progress poll in February 2023 found that 79% of American support paid family and medical leave, including 74% of Independents and 72% of Republicans.
    • Navigator Research poll in September 2022 found that 80% of Americans support paid family and medical leave, including 76% of Independents and 70% of Republicans.
    • National Partnership for Women & Families poll in April 2020 found 75% of Americans support paid family and medical leave, including 71% of Independents and 70% of Republicans.

The proposal was put forward in the ‘What’s Next Address,’ a speech Governor Gretchen Whitmer delivered on August 30 to lay out top legislative priorities for the fall and beyond. Paid family and medical leave ensures workers can be there for their families. It helps people bond with their babies, care for an aging parent, or get better after a serious medical procedure.

In her speech, Governor Whitmer stated that too many Michiganders cannot be there for their families without sacrificing a paycheck. No one should have to choose between their health, their newborn, or a sick relative and paying the bills and putting food on the table.

In response, Whitmer called for the legislature to enact paid leave so people have breathing room to get better when they’re sick, bond with their newborn, or care for an aging or ill family member. Helps small businesses compete for talent with larger companies who can offer paid leave.

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