Improving the workplace in New Jersey for women and families is the impetus behind a two-bill package that has been announced by Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande.

Photo by David Matthau, Townsquare Media

The first bill would provide a 50 percent tax credit to companies that offer childcare assistance.

"The credit can be earned in a number of ways. It can be earned by operating an on-site child care facility, by contracting with outside childcare providers, by paying for employees individualized childcare. It also applies to home-based providers," said Casagrande. "Companies will get decreased turnover and increased production. It'll reduce missed workdays and will make employees more likely to stay with the companies."

"More mothers want to work full-time than ever before and all families feel the stress of balancing a healthy home life with productive careers. We can achieve a stronger blend in a way that helps businesses operate efficiently while growing our economy and creating jobs," said Casagrande. "New Jersey is a good place for women to work and we're going to make it a national leader for families with some common sense proposals that will allow our families and companies to work smarter and improve the bottom line."

The second bill, the New Jersey Family First Act, would recognize companies that encourage women to succeed and promote family-friendly policies.

"It will knock down obstacles that are hard for us to legislate. The Department of Labor will institute this policy. It'll be like a good housekeeping seal of approval for companies that agree to participate in the program and will make them more attractive to outside employees," said Casagrande. "Companies that receive the special logo can use it for public relations and employee relations. It's a great thing for both the women and men at that particular company that get the opportunity to succeed in the workplace, while having happy and healthy families."

"When we increase the productivity of employees and we increase the ability for businesses to keep their best employees, when we decrease turnover and increase wages, it will grow the GDP of New Jersey and we're thrilled about that," said Casagrande.

"It'll benefit families, it will benefit employers and it will benefit our state economy by unleashing the full power and talent of our workforce."