Puberty Pardon - FMLA Amendment
Puberty Pardon - FMLA Amendment
Why this petition matters
I am a trans man and since beginning my second puberty in January of 2022, I have come to the conclusion that time off should be afforded to those of us who are transitioning and working.
Pregnant folx are afforded time off for hormonal changes while they are experiencing them. They are given time off to bond and recover.
Trans people who are working are not afforded the same grace and I believe they should be for many reasons:
- We experience hormonal changes, too. Some more drastic than pregnancy given that many of these are long-term or permanent.
- We sometimes experience changes in sleep. This can mean nightmares, night terrors, hypersomnia, or insomnia. Sometimes it is all of the above and it is difficult to work a structured 8AM-5PM job when your sleep is so disrupted.
- Other side effects such as migraines, nausea, and vomiting are common with hormonal changes, and these effects make it hard to work any job.
- We need time to take off for surgeries. It is not every trans person's wish to have any surgery and it is not anyone else's business if they choose to or not. However, IF a trans person should choose and schedule a surgery, they should be allowed the appropriate time off to recover from said surgery without risking their jobs. EVEN IF THE JOB IN QUESTION IS NOT STRENUOUS IN NATURE, THESE CONSIDERATIONS SHOULD BE PUT IN PLACE.
I believe that these are things that should be added and covered under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). If we get these changes implemented, it would mean making it easier for trans folx who are out and transitioning to get and maintain a job, which would add more folx back into the workforce.
To further my argument, FMLA is not paid time off. It is simply unpaid time that is awarded to employees who fall under certain qualifying criteria such as:
- for the birth of a son or daughter, and to bond with the newborn child;
- for the placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care, and to bond with that child;
- to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent – but not a parent “in-law”) with a serious health condition;
to take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition; or
- for qualifying exigencies arising out of the fact that the employee’s spouse, son, daughter, or parent is on covered active duty or call to covered active duty status as a member of the National Guard, Reserves, or Regular Armed Forces.
I have personally been able to take FMLA for the following reasons:
- Covid 19 positive - even though I was working at home at the time of my diagnosis, it exhausted me and ran me down to the point that I had to miss in order to recover from it properly.
- Migraine Headaches - I am still seeking treatment for these at the current time and have not been able to identify all of my triggers for migraines (I swear sometimes just speaking about them triggers them) and I was able to take off for them during my time of employment, I was grateful for this as at the start of my second puberty, I began to experience insanely bad migraines that could last anywhere from two to fourteen days, even with preventative, abortive, and other medications to treat them.
- Bipolar Depression - I am still being treated for my mental illness, don't get me wrong, but I needed a medication change and prior to the change, I was so apathetic and down that I physically could not leave my bed. I missed four days of work when I only had accrued time to cover a day and a half, thanks to FMLA I was able to keep my job when I went to my doctor with the paperwork and she provided evidence.
I think that given I was able to be granted the grace for migraines and a major depressive episode, we should also be able to be awarded these things during our times of change (the beginning stages of second puberty).
Please help me present this to the US Department of Labor as an amendment to the existing FMLA.