Hot topic in the news is paid meternity leave in the US. What do you think?

posted 2 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 2
Member
4024 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

GrannyPantiesRock:  I guess I can’t believe (okay, I can but it frustrates me) that the US has such shitty maternity leave! I work in a professional that historically and still to this day is dominated by women (teacher) and our maternity leave sucks ass too! Fortunately, my district does pay for 6 weeks of the leave, but come on! How is 6 weeks enough of a maternity leave?! This is why I’m so cautiously trying to plan when DH and I conceive so that I can have as much time as possible with our kid before returning to work. But at this stage in our lives if I got pregnant at another point, we probably could only afford the 6 weeks off (maybe 8-10) before I went back to work. I don’t know that it will happen, and if it does, it will take a looonng time, but man it would be awesome!

Post # 3
Member
730 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

GrannyPantiesRock:  Understandable concerns.  As someone who lives in Canada and who is entitled to 12 months paid maternity leave, I can tell you that the act of avoiding hiring women because of potential paid leave may be prevalent at the beginning, but would die down once people realize it’s not that big of a deal.

Post # 4
Member
2871 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

Women at my work are always jealous of our counterparts in Ireland since the maternity leave is so much better there. I think it would be awesome to have better maternity leave here in the U.S. But I agree that I’d be worried about hiring practicce after that.

Post # 5
Member
730 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

GrannyPantiesRock:  Also, not sure what the US is considering in terms of implementing this program, but it is actually called “parental leave” here in Canada.  Either parent can opt to take the leave, so in my workplace, which has wonderful “top up” benefits, many men actually opt to take the parental leave because it would mean less of a loss of income during that period.  This likely reduces *some* prejudice in my workplace against women.

Post # 6
Member
2696 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Im a Canadian bee, and from an outsider looking in, I feel genuinely sad for my US friends and the lack of mat leave in thier country.

I never had it be an issue to find a job based on the fact I was of childbearing age and never had issues returning after 16 months away. I count my blessings every day that I was able to experience the first full year of my kiddo’s life.

 

Post # 7
Member
1566 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Luckily, my company has decent maternity leave. Though I wish that having a year off were possible. One of my colleagues abroad managed to take a year+ off and jumped right back in.

Post # 8
Member
7261 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2013

As someone who had 12 weeks of unpaid maternity leave, the US absolutely needs to rethink how we do things. I would love to have what Canada has.

Post # 9
Member
42469 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Once decent paid maternity leave becomes the norm, employers quickly realize they can’t boycott a whole large segment of the population such as young women who may or may not be planning to get pregnant.

Happy2bMrs:  It’s actually a combination of maternity and parental leave in Canada.

Maternity leave is up to 15 weeks and must be taken with 17 weeks of the expected or actual date of birth. This leave is only open to the birth mother or surrogate mother.

Parental  leave is up  to 35 weeks and must be taken with 52 weeks of the date the child was born or placed with you for adoption and can be taken by biological, adoptive or other legally recognized parents. The 35 weeks are available to be split by the parents so the father can take parental leave while the mother is still on maternity leave if that is what they want to do, or it can be taken by either one of them after the maternity leave.

Post # 10
Member
1055 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2014 - Loft

GrannyPantiesRock:  Personally in Canada we get a year of paid maternity leave @ 55% of our income prior to going on leave. It is an absolute luxury.

Post # 11
Member
96 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

GrannyPantiesRock:  it’s illegal (in the US) for potential employers to ask questions regarding martial/parental status. It’s even worse to use that information to deny employment to someone.

Post # 12
Member
42469 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

missjz:  and some of us are lucky enough to get topped up to 100% of our normal wages because of our collective agreement.

Post # 14
Member
3355 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I’m pretty certain that the reason for the pushback on maternity leave is because it’s a business. Companies are in the business to make a profit, and paying someone who is going to be out for so long and not contributing to profits is just not a good business plan.

However, I can also see it from the other side, where you’re more willing to come back to an employer who does provide maternity leave and employee retaining percentages would be higher.

My employer has maternity leave for up to 18 weeks paid, as well as paternity leave (though I’m not sure how long that is, pretty long though). It really depends on the company, but I think for the most part, many don’t have such programs. I think the whole maternity leave status needs to change, but I don’t think it’s something that should be demanded.

Post # 15
Member
1055 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2014 - Loft

julies1949:  That is even better. The 55% may only apply to me in my current position. To be honest I don’t know too much about the policies for anyone else. I just know how lucky we are to get a year off.

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