Liberals are always talking a good game about providing people with access to paid medical leave and paid family leave. However, the solutions that they have come up with so far are leaving a great deal to be desired. As it turns out, it is easier to talk about these problems than it is to provide actual solutions that help people who are in need.
The Congressional Budget Office has taken the time to evaluate the Family and Medical Leave Insurance Act that has been proposed by the Democrats. According to this analysis, the Democrats have a very long way to go before they can start to assist the workers that they are trying to help.
Policymakers would be left with some very challenging choices to make. They would either have to raise taxes significantly or ration the benefits. The payroll tax revenues that are supposed to be able to provide the funding would begin to fall short within one year of the act being passed.
This is something that the Democrats should have stopped to consider before it was too late. More and more people would want to apply for these benefits and the CBO analysis shows that this would cause the costs to soar to an untenable number. These costs are slated to reach 240% within six short years.
The legislation is slated to set up an unfunded entitlement program. This would cause Congress to have to ration benefits. Those who apply for assistance would be limited. They would not be able to take advantage of it for extended periods and the amount that they would receive would be limited as well.
Americans are being told that the legislation would cost them little more than a cup of coffee. Of course, anyone who has taken more than two seconds to analyze the legislation can tell you that this simply isn’t true. If this particular federal paid family leave program was to be enacted, the average American would be forced to spend at least $1,500 per year.
This is no exaggeration, either. Social Security started out in the same manner. At first, it only accounted for a 2 percent payroll tax. By the time we reach 2040, Social Security’s taxation rate must rise to 16.6% in order to pay out all of the necessary benefits. Low-income workers and their loved ones would be made to suffer the most.
These are the families that suffer when taxes are raised. They are already trying their best to survive on a limited budget. Did the Democrats stop to consider the fact that these families will lose more than they could ever possibly gain from policies like this one?
Partial benefits would make it harder for these families to make ends meet. They are also unaware of these sorts of programs and less likely to take advantage of them. In other words, the very people that these programs are designed to help would not actually benefit. Their ability to qualify for additional government benefits is also compromised.
Programs of this nature are widely considered to be regressive in nature. The low-income families that truly need these resources cannot access them because they are being redistributed to families in the middle-class tier. Canada is already experiencing these issues, as these programs only to serve to reinforce the class inequality that already exists.
The average worker’s leave needs are not going to be met by these types of initiatives. If these plans are meant to assist those who are in the lowest income brackets, this is something that needs to be addressed. Employers and workers who do not need access to these benefits should not be receiving government funding. All these programs do is provide unnecessary windfalls to the middle class.
Employers are also working harder on providing the necessary benefits to their workers, without needing the government to intervene. If employers are not willing to provide paid leaves anymore, they are going to lose their workforce. The cost of providing paid leaves pales in comparison to the costs associated with the hiring and training of new employees.
Policymakers should be taking this opportunity to create an act that is more flexible. The Working Families Flexibility Act could provide these workers with these benefits and keep them from having to make sacrifices in other areas. At the end of the day, isn’t that what it is all about? The working class deserves options that are flexible and allow them to make the choices that they want to make…not the choices that the government is forcing them into.