NEW YORK — Governor Andrew Cuomo says New York outperformed other states in the first year of paid family leave in overall participation.

The program enacted in New York allows workers to get paid while caring for newborns and sick relatives. Cuomo says it's the strongest program of its kind in the nation. 

The law gives someone who just had a baby or someone who has to care for a family member 10 weeks of time off, and they will be compensated with 55% of their salary up to a cap.

Those numbers will continue to rise. In 2021 employees will get up to 12 weeks of paid leave at 67% of their weekly wage.

Not only did New York have the highest percentage of participation but also the highest percentage of men using it, and the highest percentage of people using it to care for a family member with a health condition.

Workers are able to use the leave to take care of a newborn child, if a spouse is called for active military duty abroad or if a family member is sick.

"We've had over 128,000 people now take advantage of the opportunity to be able to take care of their family obligations without fear of losing income or their jobs. That's why New York State is so proud to have the most generous program in the country" Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul said.

The Governor's office says the majority of people who took paid family leave this year made less than $60,000 a year and took it for the birth of a newborn child.

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