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By Kyleen Luhrs, Alee Perkins, Rachel Shaffer, Kelsey Sholund, Manahil Siddiqi, and Rebecca Wu, students at the University of Washington schools of medicine and public health. Manahil Siddiqi is pursuing a graduate certificate in the global health of women, adolescents and children.

As students at the University of Washington School of Medicine and School of Public Health, we are concerned about the lack of paid parental leave in Washington state.

Currently, the United States is the only industrialized country that does not guarantee paid parental leave. Early childhood development has a huge impact on future health, and paid parental leave contributes to better infant care, family bonding, and improved health for new parents. We support House Bill 1116 and Senate Bill 5032, which both lay out detailed policy plans for paid parental and medical leave in Washington State.

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Read the full op-ed in The Olympian