Meghan Markle Cold-Called Senators About Paid Family Leave

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, continues to advocate for paid family leave.

The duchess is reaching out to several members of Congress on both sides of the aisle to campaign for national mandated paid family and medical leave, per Politico. Duchess Meghan cold-called both Democratic and Republican senators to express her support for the policy as an engaged citizen.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand told the outlet that the New York Democrat gave the senators’ numbers to Duchess Meghan. The duchess previously thanked Sens. Gillibrand and Patti Murray for their work advocating for paid leave in Congress.

“I talked to each of the women senators and let them know that she’s going to reach out, because she only completed two of the calls,” Gillibrand told Politico. “She’s going to call some others, so I let them know in advance.”

“She wants to be part of a working group to work on paid leave long term and she’s going to be. Whether this comes to fruition now or later, she’ll be part of a group of women that hopefully will work on paid leave together,” she added.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia told Politico she was driving in her car when she received a phone call with the number blocked.

“Honestly … I thought it was Sen. [Joe] Manchin. His calls come in blocked. And she goes ‘Sen. Capito?’ I said, ‘Yes.’ She said, ‘This is Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex,'” the Republican senator told the outlet.

Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, another Republican senator, also received a call from the Duchess of Sussex.

“I was happy to talk with her. But I’m more interested in what the people of Maine are telling me about it,” she said.

Duchess Meghan began her public efforts towards paid leave earlier this month, when she penned an open letter to Congress about the topic. In the letter, she argued that a national paid-leave mandate would not only help individual families, but the country as a whole.

“In taking care of your child, you take care of your community, and you take care of your country—because when paid leave is a right, we’re creating a foundation that helps address mental health outcomes, health care costs, and economic strength at the starting line,” Meghan wrote. “Paid leave should be a national right, rather than a patchwork option limited to those whose employers have policies in place, or those who live in one of the few states where a leave program exists. … This is about putting families above politics.”

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