Pushing for paternity leave
Over the past five years, the average amount of paid paternity leave offered by top companies has more than doubled! This is good news, as a recent survey report 89 percent of men say it’s important for employers to offer this. But are men taking it?
Two-thirds of dads say childcare should be a shared responsibility by both parents. Yet, only nine percent of American companies offer any paid paternity leave, compared to countries such as Iceland who give dads 90 days off! Experts say the first three months of a newborn’s life is a critical time for them to secure an attachment to their parents.
Mother Amy DaCosta Gomez said to Ivanhoe, “To be able to bond with your son, your first child, to have more time, and not have to worry about money.”
Not only mothers, but some fathers know this as well.
Patrick D’Silva explained, “It would allow us to still be close to our child; I appreciated the flexibility.”
Most men admit that even if their company offered paternity leave, paid or unpaid, they wouldn’t take it for fear of losing their job or future advancement opportunities. So now business magazines like Forbes are suggesting a different approach: mandated paternity leave!
And one Boston-based company has done just that! It is among the first to not only give men and women equal lengths of paid leave, but insisting that men take it. They instituted this mandatory policy in 2016, to break the bias and end the idea that having a baby will kill your career. Now we’ll see if others follow in their footsteps.
Currently, the family and medical leave act allows both parents to take up to 12 weeks off following the birth of a baby, but there is no rule that requires this leave must be paid. Companies with fewer than 50 employees are exempt.
Contributor(s) to this news report include: Gabriella Battistiol, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor and Videographer.