NEW YORK (CBSNewYork)Rep. Carolyn Maloney is applauding President Barack Obama‘s push for paid family leave.

Obama will order federal agencies to provide six weeks of paid parental leave to employees and is calling on state and local governments to do the same, making $2.2 billion in federal aid available to them.

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“I want to say thank you, President Obama, for not only talking about family friendly policies for American workers, but taking concrete actions to implement them,” said Maloney, D-N.Y., who has been pushing for paid maternity leave for 15 years.

Maloney is hoping Obama’s order will set the tone for private industry, WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reported.

“It only seems reasonable that with over 1.8 million employees across the country, the government should be the leader in family friendly policies,” Maloney said.

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, just 12 percent of American workers receive paid family leave.

Of the world’s 185 industrialized nations, only the United States and Papua New Guinea do not offer paid maternity leave.

Currently, New Jersey, California and Rhode Island are the only states to offer paid family leave.

At his State of the Union address Tuesday, Obama also called on the Republican-led Congress to pass a bill allowing millions of Americans to earn up to seven days of paid sick leave each year. Currently, 61 percent of workers receive paid sick leave, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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“That forces too many parents to make the gut-wrenching choice between a paycheck and a sick kid at home,” Obama said.