Gillibrand agenda seeks to help working families

Jan 17, 2014

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand unveiled a five-point plan in Buffalo Friday that she says would update workplace rules to strengthen middle-class families.

Gillibrand's American Opportunity Agenda would increase the minimum wage to above the poverty rate,  make quality affordable day care more accessible, provide universal pre-K, ensure equal pay for equal work, and create paid family medical leave. 

Sen. Gillibrand says working families need a paycheck during hard times.
Credit Chris Caya/WBFO News

"Basically, every employee and every employer puts a little bit on money in an account every single week. It's about the cost of a cup of coffee. And for the cost of a cup of coffee a week, you can have that piece of mind to know, should you have a child, should you have a challenge in your family where someone is gravely ill, you can take that leave that is mandated, but you can take it on a paid basis so that you can provide for your family," Gillibrand said.

The Hudson Valley Democrat says while our country guarantees unpaid leave, many people can't afford to go without a paycheck.

Gillibrand was in town as part of the Western New York Women's Foundation Pathways to Progress Speaker Series.