ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Illinois General Assembly passed “Zachary’s Parent Protection Act” Friday, extending unpaid leave for parents who experience the loss of a child to suicide or homicide.
Laura Kane, of Rockford, lost her job following the death of her son, Zachary. A bill passed today will give parents like Kane more time to grieve.
The bill entitles employees of large employers to use a maximum of 12 weeks of unpaid leave. Employees of small employers will be entitled to up to 6 weeks. Parents are currently allowed a maximum of 2 weeks of unpaid bereavement leave following the loss of a child.
State Representative Maurice West (D-Rockford) is the chief sponsor of Zachary’s Parent Protection Act.
The bill now goes to Governor J.B. Pritzker for his signature to be enacted into law.
Kane collaborated with the Winnebago County Trustee Program to create “Marshmallow’s Hope,” an organization that aids with mental health, suicide prevention, and child abuse.