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Priorities? America's Family Values

June 12, 2013
The day remains one of the most vibrant memories of my life. After months of preparation and a day at the hospital, our first child was born. Floating on cloud 9, and focused on taking care of what needed to be done in anticipation of her coming home, I quickly turned my attention back to work. It was spring break at my university so those in those first few days I wasn’t pulled in different directions. That would end before she even turned 10 days old. I never thought about taking a break from work. That would be unfair to my students, my colleagues, and to all the deadlines in front of me...
David Leonard's picture

It Takes Time

June 12, 2013
I woke up with a startle. It was 1:30 AM and my wife was telling me we needed to go. It was time to have the baby. Luckily, our “nesting phase” had kicked in the previous weekend so we were already packed in anticipation of the big day. Luggage full of extra clothes, baby outfits, books, snacks, and electronics were already set up and waiting neatly by the door. We woke up her son, gathered our bags, and rushed out the door in the calmest way possible. We weren’t worried about missing work or not having income to pay the bills. That was taken care of ahead of time. When we arrived at the...
Brady Bogenreif's picture

Odd Man Out. Why isn’t anyone else taking paternity leave?

June 12, 2013
Something strange happens when I wear the baby. I slip into a black carrier, strap the baby in, make sure she’s snug, put a hat over her tiny head, then head out. A woman with a baby on her hip? So common most people wouldn’t notice. But a man, by himself, with a baby on his chest, bobbing and bouncing with every step? Before I might have been invisible to the world. Now people look twice. Tough guys on the corner smirk, sometimes laugh. Ladies behind the donut counter wave. Security guards soften their glare and grin. Pretty women stop to talk. Old men smile. When I wear the baby strangers...
Matt Pusateri's picture

No Shame in Feeding Your Children Using Food Stamps

June 11, 2013
This article originally appeared in Mamiverse . I was at the supermarket checkout line when the cashier asked me if I wanted to make a donation for the needy. I would have liked to, but instead, I flashed my food stamps card and shook my head, saying: “I can’t. This time, I’m the needy.” The poor guy blushed and mumbled an apology. I suppose he must have felt bad for me. “It’s okay,” I said. “I’m glad to have the help.” That day, almost three years ago now, I realized that I didn’t look like the type of person the cashier would have expected to be on food stamps. On other trips to the grocery...
Lorraine C. Ladish's picture

Why We Need the Women's Equality Act on the 50th Anniversary of the Equal Pay Act

June 10, 2013
Let's play a game: take out a slip of paper and write your salary down, crumple it up, and trade papers with a co-worker of the opposite sex. This is what one New York woman did just a few years ago and she was shocked by the results--she found out she was receiving far less compensation than a male co-worker who was doing the same work as her. Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act (EPA), signed into law by President John F. Kennedy. As President Kennedy remarked when signing the law in 1963, "Our economy today depends upon women in the labor force." This is even truer today...
Dina Bakst's picture

Breastfeeding IS a Civil Right!

June 1, 2013
Being a new mother is not easy and getting breastfeeding off to a good start is a small – no, make that a HUGE miracle! Add the stress of losing your job because you tried to give your baby the best start in life? I can’t even imagine it. Breastfeeding became a protected Civil Right in California last year when Gov. Brown signed AB 2386, which amended our Fair Employment and Housing Act , to include a woman’s breastfeeding status. However, for years women in the US have been at risk of losing their job, because of a series of Federal Cases, in which the old patriarchy selectively sided with...
Genevieve Colvin's picture

Latinas commend passage of immigration bill from Senate committee

May 22, 2013
The organization of which I am the Executive Director, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health , released this statement following the immigration reform bill that passed the Senate Judiciary Committee. While we commend the Senate Committee for doing so, we still have deep concerns that both health care access and LGBTQ families are not included in the bill. --Jessica Washington, D.C.—The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) commends the Senate Judiciary Committee for its passage of the Senate bill for immigration reform, the “Border Security, Economic...
Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas's picture

Celebrating Fathers Who 'Leave' to Be Home

May 22, 2013
This Father’s Day, we’re pulling back the curtains to reveal a side of father’s work that is rarely shown. We’re highlighting fathers who have or wanted to take time off from work to help their family establish a strong foundation, including a solid start with breastfeeding. After the birth of our first child, those days were colored with our excitement, naivete, and grueling sleep-deprivation - the hazing of new parents. I felt like a zombie after weeks of waking to nurse and burp the baby every 2-3 hours. I was commended all around for breastfeeding our son, but (c) Toshimasa Ishibashi the...
Anayah Sangodele-Ayoka's picture

Working Families Flexibility Act is an Oxymoron

May 7, 2013
This blog post originally appeared in 9to5.org . Much like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, the falsely cloaked Working Families Flexibility Act (HR 1406) would hurt, not help, families. The Working Families Flexibility Act, a true misnomer, would in reality ensure workers have less time, less flexibility and less money. This anti-family proposal would force workers to spend more time away from their families in exchange for possibly getting to spend time later with their families. Under this proposal, the employer, not the employee, determines when earned comp time can be used. In other words, a...
Linda Meric's picture

What’s Wrong with Comp Time? Ask Government Workers

May 6, 2013
This week, Martha Roby (R-AL) will introduce the same discredited comp time bill that leaders in her party have been pushing for years. Misleadingly titled “The Working Families Flexibility Act,” HR 1406 would permit private sector employers to offer compensation time in lieu of overtime pay to their hourly work force. At first glance the idea seems great: flexible time, family friendly. What’s not to love? Public sector workers can answer this question. In 1985, Congress voted to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) allowing government employers to offer comp time in lieu of overtime...
Carol Joyner's picture

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