We asked candidates for Knoxville mayor to send us their stance on paid maternity leave. Here are their responses:
“As an employer myself, I understand that employees are an organization’s most valuable asset. The City is fortunate to have some hard-working men and women serving our residents, and I would certainly be in favor of offering paid maternity leave as a consideration.
Once elected, I will propose an in-depth analysis of our employee benefits program to look at what benefits are working and what is missing or not providing the value needed. We must strike a balance of offering our employees the most competitive benefit package that we can afford, while also keeping the tax payer’s interest in our mind.”
“Having a child last year changed my life. While it is difficult to express what an amazing experience it has been, it has also made me so much more aware of the challenges of working and raising a family. I was fortunate because I was able to take paid time off of work to be with Stella. Unfortunately, most working parents do not have this luxury. To make sure we can recruit and retain the best employees, and more importantly to show that we value their families, the city of Knoxville should develop a paid family leave program.
As Mayor, I would propose a paid family leave program for Knoxville city employees.
Paid family leave is good for everyone. It keeps the economy of Knoxville moving and it keeps morale high. A family should not have to choose between buying diapers or returning to work. But, for many families in Knoxville, this is their reality. I believe we can do better. A strong paid family leave program can set a standard for how we treat our workers and their families, and improve the quality of life for our neighbors.
Join me in supporting the 1,500 employees in the City of Knoxville to ensure that each family has the option to choose paid family leave. Sign here to say that you agree, we should have paid family leave in Knoxville.
When we look around the country, we see other cities like Nashville, Atlanta, and Greensboro taking this step. It is time for Knoxville to prioritize this. We are a thriving city, and we need to ensure that the success of our city is felt by everyone no matter the zip code. As I have said from the beginning, this race is about ideas and communicating our priorities. I would make this a priority within the budget we currently have in Knoxville. We can do it.
Paid family leave is another step to keep moving Knoxville forward. “
“YES! I support paid maternity leave for city employees. Healthy families are a huge priority for me as mayor, and that starts by being a family-friendly employer and role model for other businesses in our community.
As Mayor I would study the paid maternity plans other cities have enacted and see how we can make it work for Knoxville in a smart, fiscally responsible way. Paid maternity leave means happier, healthier, less-stressed employees, which improves morale, lowers stress, and enables city workers to better serve the people of Knoxville. . It’s a long-term win for a healthier city. “
“I would absolutely support paid maternity leave. Knoxville is an innovative city and we can set an example for other cities by coming up with an innovative way to implement paid maternity leave.”