Virginia Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy Launches May Storybook

Virginia Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy Launches May Storybook

CONTACT: Kristina Hagen, 703-314-6405


RICHMOND — Today, the Virginia Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy launched the May Storybook. Every month, Va-CFFE publishes stories showcasing the experiences of working Virginians, small business owners, healthcare providers and patient advocates from every corner of the Commonwealth to highlight the need for a statewide paid family and medical leave program in Virginia.

This month’s featured story is Elizabeth in Falls Church. She was diagnosed with severe Crohn’s Disease at a young age, but her parents had access to paid leave so they were able to be with her all through her various hospitalizations and treatment without worrying about how they were going to pay their bills. Other families aren’t so lucky. But as an adult, Elizabeth worked a demanding job and had no access to paid medical leave for the times she needed medical care. She pushed too hard to stay on the job, got sick and required hospitalization, and was let go from her job.

“As a child, I had access to the best medical care, and the care of my mother and father whenever I needed them,” said Elizabeth. “My heart broke for all the kids at the hospital who did not have that privilege. As an adult, it is ever more clear to me how broken our system is. I sacrificed my very body over and over again for my job, but still I was let go at the drop of a hat. We have got to do better.”

Each of the 20 stories in the May storybook highlights the consequences working Virginians and families face because of the absence of a statewide paid family and medical leave policy. These powerful stories illustrate the struggles many face today and the positive difference a paid leave program could make for  families across the Commonwealth. This month’s stories include:

  • Abigail, Sterling: Parental leave
  • Audra, Henrico: COVID & special needs
  • Cherise, Hampton: Family emergency
  • Dean, Roanoke: Family emergency
  • Eileen, Hanover: Medical provider
  • Elizabeth, Falls Church: Chronic health
  • Ginger, Alexandria: Medical leave
  • Kelly, Chesterfield: Child care
  • Kera, Buena Vista: Parental leave
  • Keyona, Norfolk: Parental leave
  • Kirsten, Newport News: Parental leave
  • Lee, Alexandria: Medical leave
  • Mike, Roanoke: Small business owner
  • Nancy, Ashburn: Medical leave
  • Natalie, Dinwiddie: Black maternal health
  • Nichole, Providence Forge: End of life care
  • Roberta, Woodbridge: Medical leave
  • Shamila, Fredericksburg: Family leave
  • Siddeeqah, Roanoke: Parental leave
  • Tamiko, Gloucester: COVID & eldercare


For more information about the Virginia Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy, please visit

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