We draft and promote new laws and policies

In addition to vindicating the rights of individuals and groups of clients, Legal Aid at Work advocates for local, state and federal laws that protect and strengthen civil and employment rights. We collaborate with businesses, nonprofits, and government to encourage policy change. And we help write new laws, cosponsor them after they’ve been introduced, and promote them in the community and in legislative hearings.

Recent projects and achievements

    Workplace policies

    We direct the Healthy Mothers Workplace Coalition — nonprofits, businesses and government collaborating to recognize workplaces with family-friendly policies. This effort has led to stronger policies covering thousands of workers. (since 2013)

    Fully paid family leave

    We helped write and pass the nation’s first law requiring fully paid parental leave for many workers, an ordinance in San Francisco. (2016)

    Increased family leave payments

    We promoted AB 908, which will increase the wage replacement rate for Paid Family Leave and State Disability Insurance, from 55% to 60% or 70%, depending on income. (2016)

    Job protection for tending to childcare needs

    Co-sponsored SB 579: gives parents the right to job-protected time off for childcare emergencies and to visit or enroll their children in child care or school.(2015)

    Easier SDI processing for chronic conditions

    We sponsored SB 667, which eases the process for receiving State Disability Insurance benefits for people with chronic conditions. (2015)

    Expanded definition of family for purposes of leave

    Co-sponsored SB 770: expands the definition of family within California’s Paid Family Leave Law to cover care for grandparents, siblings, grandchildren, and parents-in-law. (2013)

    Paid sick leave

    Helped write and promote California’s Paid Sick Days Law: guaranteeing sick and safe days to millions of California workers. (2014)

    Flexible scheduling for families

    Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance: gives workers in San Francisco the right to request flexibility to help with caregiving or parenting obligations. (2013)

    Retail workers' bill of rights

    We helped draft and promoted the first law in U.S. requiring predictable scheduling for retail workers, a San Francisco ordinance. (2014)

    Job protections for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking

    Co-sponsored SB 400, which prohibits employment discrimination against survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking; requires reasonable safety accommodations for survivors at work. (2013)