Democrats seek to tighten Family and Medical Leave Act rules for companies

House Democrats last week introduced legislation that would require more employees to adhere to the Family Medical Leave Act and broaden the scope of that law to allow more employees time off to participate in school activities with their children and grandchildren.

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) introduced the Family and Medical Leave Enhancement Act on Friday. The bill, H.R. 1440, would require all companies with more than 25 employees to follow the 1993 law, as opposed to current language which only requires compliance from companies with more than 50 employees.

The bill would also require companies to allow parents to leave work to "participate in or attend an activity that is sponsored by a school or community organization and relates to a program of the school or organization that is attended by a son or daughter or a grandchild of the employee." Also required is leave time for "routine family medical care needs," including appointments for children or grandchildren.

The bill would limit eligible time off to four hours per month, and no more than 24 hours per year.