Andrea Campbell Voted For 12 Weeks of Paid Abortion Leave In Boston

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Which candidate running statewide in Massachusetts voted to grant 12 weeks of paid abortion leave to both women and men in the candidate’s previous elected position?

The answer:  former Boston city councilor Andrea Campbell, the Democratic nominee for attorney general of Massachusetts.

Campbell supported 12 weeks of paid abortion leave for both men and women as a member of the Boston city council.

In September 2021, an ordinance for the city of Boston put together by three city councilors — state Senator Lydia Edwards (D-East Boston), then-at-large city councilor (and current mayor) Michelle Wu, and now-former city councilor Anissa Essaibi George — passed unanimously. Every member of the city council voted in favor of it, including Campbell. 

It granted Boston’s city employees up to 12 weeks of paid leave for pregnancy loss, including termination, as NewBostonPost reported last year. The policy applies to both women and men and offers the same leave benefits for abortion as the city does for childbirth; that means that if a man’s wife, girlfriend, or mistress has an abortion, he can receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave. 

The city’s paid leave scheme offers employees 100 percent of their base wages during the first four weeks of leave, then 75 percent for the next four weeks, and 50 percent for the last four weeks of leave.

The expanded paid leave enacted last year applies to workers meet all of these criteria:


1.  The employee has been employed by the City of Boston in a benefits-eligible position for at least 12 consecutive months or 52 consecutive weeks without any break in service;

2.  The employee has been in pay status for at least 1250 hours in the preceding 12-month period;

3.  The employee is either (a) not covered by a collective bargaining agreement or (b) is covered by a collective bargaining agreement through:  AFSCME; AFSCME 1526; Boston Park Rangers Association; Boston Police Detective Benevolent Society, Forensics Group; IAFF; New York Typographical Union, CWA Local 14156; PSA; AFSCME; SEIU; and SENA;

4.  The employee will experience an Event on or after the effective date of this Paid Parental Leave Policy.


The September 2021 paid leave ordinance also applies to two other kinds of pregnancy loss:  miscarriages and stillbirths.

Although Campbell voted for the measure, she never spoke publicly about the ordinance at the time.  

Massachusetts Citizens for Life executive director Patricia Stewart told NewBostonPost at the time that the policy is an admission that there is a loss of life in an abortion.

“Ironically, the grant of abortion leave reinforces the pro-life view that abortion is a serious medical choice with potentially life-altering consequences for a woman’s physical, emotional, and psychological health,” Stewart told NewBostonPost in an email message in November 2021. “Liberals’ acknowledgement of this truth may have the unintended effect of causing more women to rethink an abortion decision and save a baby’s life. Or, so we can hope.”

Massachusetts Family Institute communications director Mary Ellen Siegler told NewBostonPost via email that it’s wrong to grant paid leave for those who want to have an abortion. 

“This policy equates the tragic loss of a baby through miscarriage with the intentional killing of a baby through abortion,” Siegler wrote to NewBostonPost in November 2021. “A miscarriage and an elective abortion are not the same. Policies like this devalue human life, normalize the violence of abortion, and ultimately harm women. It is well established that women who choose abortion suffer emotional trauma they have to manage for the rest of their lives. Also, it makes no sense that they would give an employee parental leave after ending the life of their child through abortion, since they are choosing not to become a parent.”

Campbell served on the Boston city council from January 2016 to January 2022. She represented the city’s District 4, which includes parts of Dorchester, Mattapan, Jamaica Plain, and Roslindale. She chose not to seek re-election as a city councilor in 2021, instead running for mayor.

In the mayor’s race, Campbell did not advance to the two-candidate November runoff election. She came in third place in the September 2021 preliminary round; she got 19.7 percent of the vote, besting then-acting mayor Kim Janey. However, she got fewer votes than both Michelle Wu (33.4 percent) and Annissa Essaibi George (22.5 percent), who advanced to the November election.

Now running for Massachusetts attorney general, Campbell is facing Bourne Republican and attorney Jay McMahon in the November general election. 

Campbell’s campaign could not be reached for comment on Monday to Tuesday this week.


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