New Poll: New Mexico Small Businesses Support Proposal to Enact State-Run Paid Family & Medical Leave Program

For Immediate Release: 
Wednesday, January 10, 2024

New poll finds the vast majority of New Mexico small business owners support state-administered paid family & medical leave benefits as a way of better retaining employees and bridging the benefits gap.

Albuquerque, New Mexico - Small Business Majority released a new poll showing small business support for paid family and medical leave programs that help employees and protect small employers. A vast majority (85%) support a state-run paid family and medical leave insurance program that would make it easier for their businesses and their employees to access uniform paid leave benefits. 

“Throughout my journey as a small business owner, I've come to realize the importance of flexibility, especially when it comes to accommodating employees' needs,” said Kristen Worthington, owner, Worthington Farms, LLC, Mesilla Park. “This experience has made me acutely aware of the importance of paid family and medical leave (PFML) and how a paid leave program can help ensure that employees have the financial support they need during challenging times. New Mexico families and businesses need PFML to thrive. I urge our state lawmakers to make PFML a reality in 2024, as it's high time we put families first.”

The poll, conducted for Small Business Majority by Chesapeake Beach Consulting, is being released as New Mexico policymakers are prioritizing their 2024 legislative agenda. This new research provides insights into why small businesses support paid family and medical leave and how it can benefit their businesses.    

  • 61% of small business owners strongly agree that a state program would better level the playing field with the larger companies that can afford to offer these programs voluntarily and pay for extended leave out-of-pocket.

  • 60% of small business owners strongly agree that paid family and medical leave insurance programs bring certain workers back into the job market, so their business would benefit from that additional workforce.

  • 55% of small business owners strongly believe that job-seekers are increasingly interested in applying to jobs that provide family-friendly benefits. 

“Like the majority of our nation’s job creators, New Mexico small business owners are doing what they can to support a healthy workplace,” said Awesta Sarkash, Small Business Majority Public Policy Director and lead on the organization’s work in New Mexico. “Our poll found that many small business owners offer some form of parental and/or family leave. But despite their best efforts to do the right thing for their employees, whom they often describe as family, these policies can be inconsistent and smaller firms struggle to shoulder the ongoing administrative burdens associated with offering their own paid family and medical leave plan. A state-run plan is needed to provide small businesses with a sustainable solution that will help recruit and retain a talented workforce.” 

As state policymakers prepare for the 2024 legislative session, it is critical that they prioritize proposals that will benefit New Mexico’s small business community and help grow the state’s economy. This new poll reveals that by enacting a state-run paid family and medical leave program, legislators will bridge the benefits gap and help small businesses save costs on a paid family leave and medical leave program. 

Conducted between Nov. 14-28, 2023, this poll reflects a survey of 305 small business owners in New Mexico. The margin of error is +/- 5.8% at 95% confidence level. To read the full report, click here


About Small Business Majority

Small Business Majority is a national small business organization that empowers America's diverse entrepreneurs to build a thriving and equitable economy. We engage our network of more than 85,000 small businesses and 1,500 business and community organizations to advocate for public policy solutions and deliver resources to entrepreneurs that promote equitable small business growth. Our deep connections with the small business community along with our scientific research enable us to educate the public about key issues impacting America’s entrepreneurs, with a special focus on advancing the smallest businesses and those facing systemic inequalities. Learn more about us on our website and follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

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