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Working (Class) Maternity Leave: What Does Marissa Mayer’s Plan Mean for the Rest of Us?

July 25, 2012
Marissa Mayer’s appointment as Yahoo’s CEO is a double-edged sword. It is, on its face, a shot in the arm to the perception of workplace equality and at the same time a reminder of how far we have to go to reach fairness for mothers working outside the home. It is also a reminder that we need mothers’ voices in elected office to fight for paid family leave, paid sick days, and affordable, accessible healthcare for all families. But who has time to run? As a mother of a nine-month-old baby and the Executive Director of the Barbara Lee Family Foundation with a mission to engage women in...
Adrienne Kimmell's picture

Telework and Promotions: New Study Emphasizes Need for Results-Focus

July 23, 2012
Thanks to a new study pubished in MIT Sloan Management Review this week, we have some fun new terms to discuss today. Except, they're not really new. If you haven't read any of the multitude of articles (like here , here , and here ) about this study, then here's a quick overview. The study argues that office workers and bosses are heavily influenced by “passive face time,” the mere presence of someone’s face in the office on a regular basis. The data shows, whether consciously or unconsciously, managers focus on presenteeism when it comes down to performance reviews and promotions. Now for...
Cali Ressler's picture

You Can Do What Mayer and Slaughter Do

July 20, 2012
What’s stunning about the reaction to Anne-Marie Slaughter’s article “ Why Women Still Can’t Have it All ” and the news that new Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is pregnant is the size and scope of the reaction itself. And I can explain that reaction with a screen shot. Those two tweets. The first one she sent broadcasts competence “I’m a new CEO tomorrow.” And the second one suggests warmth and caring “I’m going to be a mom.” Right next to each other. Tweeted within 7 hours of each other. A woman who embodies competence AND warmth and caring. In our collective cultural subconscious that does not...
Kristin Maschka's picture

"Can I Have it All?" is the Wrong Question

July 20, 2012
When I speak to groups of young women and men, more and more frequently the question I get isn’t “Can I have it all?” it’s “Should I have kids at all?” Young women and couples watch as friends have children, and see new mothers and fathers completely stressed out juggling work and family, marriages unraveling, bank accounts strained, careers derailed, and hobbies and exercise and sleep and friends pushed aside. They wonder if they really want to sign up for that. Couples that already have one small child ask me a different question, “Can we afford to have another child at all?” They know from...
Kristin Maschka's picture

"Working Maternity Leaves" Aren't the Solution

July 18, 2012
This blog was cross-posted from Womenstake , the National Women's Law Center's blog. On Monday, the news broke that a pregnant woman is now leading a Fortune 500 company—an important and exciting milestone. Before being appointed CEO of Yahoo this week, Marissa Mayer disclosed her pregnancy to Yahoo’s Board. When she announced her pregnancy publicly on Monday, she praised the Board for its “evolved thinking” in hiring her anyway – that is, for not violating the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. I’m not so sure following the law is all that praiseworthy, but here’s what made me cringe as I read...
Liz Watson's picture

On Having It All

July 10, 2012
Excerpted from full piece at The Huffington Post Anne-Marie Slaughter's article " Why Women Still Can't Have it All" published in The Atlantic has struck a collective nerve, breaking readership records on the magazine's website and generating all manner of buzz. I admire her courage to speak out on the subject, given that she was once director of policy planning at the State Department. And I appreciate her acknowledgement that high-achieving women in places of power in our country have been complicit in contributing to the prevailing sentiment that women who don't have it all must not want...
Kyra Cavanaugh's picture

My Advice to Women Who Give Advice to Women

July 2, 2012
Cross-posted from The Huffington Post . By now, you’ve probably either read or read about Anne-Marie Slaughter’s Atlantic essay in which she recounts from personal experience why she believes women cannot “have it all” and calls on all of us to recognize the conditions that must change to make it possible for women to thrive in careers and motherhood. As someone who has been writing about this issue for three years, I read her essay with relief. Finally! Now, at last, we can have the dialogue we should have been having for the last few decades instead of all the bogus “Mommy Wars.” How can we...
Katrina Alcorn's picture

Slaughter versus Sandberg: Both Right

June 23, 2012
First, thanks to Anne-Marie Slaughter for peeling the band-aid off an open wound of American womanhood. It’s our dirty little secret: balancing work and family is still impossible for elite American women because of the way we structure work, family, love, marriage, careers, masculinity, and dignity. Yes. It’s that bad. Fifteen years ago, when I began to write Unbending Gender: Why Family and Work Conflicts and What To Do About It , I thought that all we needed to do was to reshape work and careers. The key problem for women, I pointed out, is that workplaces still are designed around an...
Joan C. Williams's picture

The Gifts Mothers Really Want

May 12, 2012
My favorite Mother's day gifts from my sons were their original stories, songs and poems. But what I needed when they were infants and toddlers was something children can't deliver: affordable time off when they were born and when they were sick. So for all those candidates and elected officials interested in the women's vote and eager to prove their support for motherhood and families, here's a sampling of what mothers want and need, not just one day a year but every day: The right to care for a sick child or personal illness without losing our paychecks or our jobs. Moms need leaders to...
Ellen Bravo's picture

Earth Week is for Mothers

April 25, 2012
by Rachel Sarnoff, Executive Director & CEO Healthy Child Healthy World www.healthychild.org Happiest Babies Are Soothed by 5 S’s Can simple soothing take the place of sugar? That was the takeaway from a new study published this week in the journal Pediatrics. In a study involving more than 200 infants, researchers found the “5 S’s” baby-calming tactics worked better than the sugar-water supplements traditionally given to infants after experiencing pain, according to ABC News . The 5 S’s tactics were developed by Dr. Harvey Karp, a founding board member of Healthy Child Healthy World and...

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