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Ivanka Trump is ramping up paid family leave push with White House summit

Francesca Chambers, McClatchy Washington Bureau on

Published in Business News

WASHINGTON -- The White House is inviting lawmakers to its first summit on paid family leave and childcare affordability next month in an effort to increase momentum for Ivanka Trump's signature issues.

Invitations to the half-day Dec. 12 event at the White House were expected to be sent this week to lawmakers and advocates for those policies, White House aides told McClatchy.

Ivanka Trump, senior adviser to President Donald Trump and his daughter, who has traveled around the country talking about both issues, was expected to discuss what she has heard from her conversations at the gathering, White House aides said.

Proposals guaranteeing paid parental leave for men and women have been gaining traction among Republicans over the past three years. The White House says it is open to any proposal on this issue that can move forward, including a bipartisan proposal in the Senate that would give new and adoptive parents up to $5,000 in compensation for missed wages.

"Never before has this issue had so much support and momentum, on both sides of the aisle," Ivanka Trump told McClatchy.

The federal government currently only requires that companies offer unpaid leave to take care of newborn babies, newly adopted children and ill family members. White House aides say that they are encouraged by increased GOP engagement on the issue.

 

"Since President Trump's inauguration, the question has finally turned from 'should Paid Family Leave be on the table' to 'what is the best Paid Family Leave policy for America's families?'" Ivanka Trump said.

President Trump has included paid family leave proposals in every one of his administration's budgets and has listed it as a priority in his annual address to Congress.

"Republicans know that American families are the true backbone of America," President Trump said on Sept. 13. "That is why I was the first president to propose nationwide paid family leave in my budget. Very important."

His daughter has traveled around the country advocating for a federal program and has met with more than 60 legislators, both Republicans and Democrats, on the issue, White House aides said.

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