ANALYZING THE IMPACT OF PAID FAMILY LEAVE ON PARENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES IN CALIFORNIA
Because the US is the only developed country that does not have a comprehensive Paid Family Leave (PFL) program, many states have considered establishing their own programs. California implemented a PFL policy in July 2004, and several other states are currently in the process of implementing PFL policies, making it likely that other states will participate in these programs in the future. The team, hypothesizing that PFL policies lead to improved parental health outcomes in the years following a child’s birth, analyzed California data to measure the causal impact of the PFL program on several parental health outcomes—including smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, and psychological distress—while also exploring differences in outcomes by race. The findings provide additional evidence to support the impact of PFL policies and their implementation at the state and federal level.