Bea’s Law: Durkan signs family leave expansion for city employees who lose a child

SEATTLE -- An expanded version of Seattle's paid family leave program is now law.

On Monday, Mayor Jenny Durkan signed the legislation called Bea's Law. City employees who lose a child will now get access to paid family care leave.

They will also get paid time off if a partner dies from pregnancy-related issues.

In the past, they had to use paid sick or vacation time.  If that wasn't available, they would sometimes have to choose between going to work, requesting donated sick leave or staying home without pay.

Mayor Durkan says no city employee should be forced to make that decision.

"To be able to provide for your employees in the hardest, most grieving time, and let them take that time, we need to be able to do that," Durkan said.

The law is named after a city employee's daughter who passed away shortly after birth. Due to the city's policy at the time, the employee didn't qualify for more than three days of paid leave.

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