San Francisco (February 21, 2018) — Legal Aid at Work (LAAW) has been awarded a $300,000 grant from the Aspen Institute to assist low-income working parents. The grant was given in recognition of LAAW’s status as one of the six “boldest” organizations in the country supporting the economic security of working families.
While California and the San Francisco Bay Area have some of the strongest legal protections for pregnant women and new parents, many people who could benefit from those protections are simply unaware of them. For example, although paid family leave has been available throughout California for well over a decade, as of 2015 only 36% of California voters had ever even heard of it. Awareness is also unfortunately on the decline, especially among low-wage workers.
The $300,000 grant from the Aspen Institute helps address this problem by supporting LAAW’s engagement with employers, policymakers, and healthcare providers to advance solutions that meet low-income families’ needs. For example, LAAW is meeting expecting and new parents where they already are—at the doctor’s office. Virtually all women receive prenatal care and see their healthcare providers multiple times during pregnancy and beyond. LAAW integrates workplace rights information with prenatal care for women with low incomes—a strategy that has the potential to reach every new parent at the very time they need it.
“Low-income families are working hard enough as it is,” said Sharon Terman, Director of the Work and Family Program at LAAW. “The Aspen Institute grant helps ensure that these families do not have to struggle even more to access basic workplace supports like paid family leave. We are thrilled to partner with the Aspen Family Prosperity Innovation Community to promote the economic stability and well-being of working families.”
Legal Aid at Work (LAAW) is a nonprofit legal services organization that has been assisting California’s low-income, working families for more than 100 years. Its programs conduct outreach, provide direct legal services to thousands of people each year, engage in litigation when necessary, and advocate for policies that strengthen the rights of low-income people. More information about Legal Aid at Work can be found at www.legalaidatwork.org.
Ascend at the Aspen Institute is the national hub for breakthrough ideas and collaborations that move children and the adults in their lives to educational success, economic security, and health and well-being. More information about the Aspen Institute and its Ascend policy program can be found here: https://ascend.aspeninstitute.org/, and more information about the Aspen Family Prosperity Innovation Community can be found here: https://www.aspeninstitute.org/news/press-release/family-prosperity-innovation-communiity/ and here: http://bit.ly/2srVDW9.