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RI Senate mulls paid time off for caregivers

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- Advocates for the elderly and children are urging Rhode Island lawmakers to approve paid time off for workers who have to care for a new child or ill loved one.

Groups including Rhode Island Kids Count and the AARP spoke in favor of the proposal Wednesday before the Senate Finance Committee.

The bill from Sen. Gayle Goldin would extend up to eight weeks of compensation to workers who must leave their jobs temporarily to care for a loved one. The bill would be phased in over three years.

Workers would pay for the program through a payroll deduction. Employees making $43,000 a year would see their pay decrease by 83 cents a week.

California and New Jersey have similar programs.

A vote on the bill hasn't been scheduled.