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The Promise of New Deal Feminism

December 14, 2009
A single mom needs work; she’s literally thinking about applying for welfare. As she writes on her blog , “I had been looking for a better job, but there were none to be had in the low-income/high-unemployment area where I lived. And I couldn’t get a full-time job anyway — I was still on the waiting list for a spot in daycare.” She starts working freelance, from home. This suits her schedule as a mom. But “I was treated like crap , too. Bossed around, degraded, condescended to, with jibes made about my having to work from home. I quickly learned not to mention I had kids. I quickly learned...

Can the US Afford Paid Leave? YES!

November 27, 2009
From Your (Wo)manInWashington blog When the subject of paid leave comes up, someone will say: "Oh, no, we could never pay for that, it would be too expensive!!" It's the Voice of Doom, and I hear it frequently. So often repeated, I know it by heart. It will destroy small businesses. It would push taxes over the cliff. The government is already too far in the red. So, while everyone agrees in theory that maternity leave, paternity leave, sick leave for yourself or to care for an ill family member, school leave, and breastfeeding breaks at work might possibly be a good thing, the conversation...
Valerie Young's picture

Continuing the Drumbeat for Breastfeeding Rights.

November 16, 2009
Breastfeeding rights is a big topic with MomsRising members. In fact, as we were developing this blog to update our members and allies on the current status of breastfeeding legislation, the issue again came to the attention of the MomsRising team when several MomsRising members expressed concern that showing a photo which included babies with bottles in a recent Halloween email ( http://www.momsrising.org/babyhalloween ) undermined the promotion of breastfeeding. As we as a Momsrising team deliberated about how to respond to this concern, many of us shared how breastfeeding our babies with...

Free Yourself from 24/7 - Harvard Business Review Shows the Way

November 8, 2009
I was amazed to learn how much research there is -- at business schools -- saying 24/7 work culture is counter-productive and not the necessity it is often seen to be. Even in the most demanding jobs, re-thinking time use gives us BOTH better results for clients and more dinners at home. A newly published Harvard Business Review piece (on a 4-year study at Boston Consulting Group) offers very inspiring ideas we can all apply where we work.
Sharon Meers's picture

Paycheck Jobs, Paycheck Feminism

October 30, 2009
I’ve been on a one-woman campaign to resurrect the phrase, paycheck job , used by Betty Friedan in The Feminine Mystique forty years ago. Friedan was referring, of course, to jobs outside the home for which people receive money. She recognized that the unpaid job of caring for children and home was also “work”—as do most people today. But by placing the adjective “paycheck” in front of “job,” she implicitly elevated the status of stay-at-home mothers’ (and fathers’) equally important job. Words have power. Now Karen Kornbluh and Rachel Homer write in Ms. Magazine that we need “Paycheck...
Nanette Fondas's picture

Follow Valerie Jarrett's Lead this Halloween

October 30, 2009
Why is it so hard to tell our bosses we have to leave for family reasons? What if all the dads where we worked did it more often? Leaders like Valerie Jarrett show that being committed to your kids and your job are not mutually exclusive -- and employers win when they recognize that. Maria Shriver's report A Women's Nation offers fresh ideas for opening up more common-sense conversation - like adopting UK "right to request" rules that allow parents to get some control over their hours and still produce great results for their employers.
Sharon Meers's picture

What Should Companies Do to Retain New Moms?

October 30, 2009
I was at the Working Mother Work Life Congress this week, which showcases the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers and also provides workshops and discussions for people who work in the field unfortunately called “work life.” Companies were asking: What should we do to retain new moms, and to keep them engaged and energized? I’m throwing it out there to you, because the numbers speak to a huge need to keep us. Sharon Klun from Accenture noted that the touch point for women is three for five months after they return from maternity leave. That’s when women are often in crisis, thinking, maybe...

Win for Valuing Families Agenda!

October 28, 2009
President Obama today signed the Defense Reauthorization Act with a provision for expanded family leave for military families. This is an important victory for all families in the U.S. because it acknowledges the value of caregivers in the health of our nation. The new provision, introduced in the Senate by Sen. Chris Dodd and in the House by Cong. Lynn Woolsey, will amend the Family and Medical Leave Act’s (FMLA) military family provisions first enacted in Fiscal Year 2008, allowing primary caregivers of military members to take up to 26 weeks of unpaid leave to care for the wounded service...
Ellen Bravo's picture

Sex, Love and Labor Statistics

September 28, 2009
On NPR this week, I was asked if there’s any good in the new statistics showing that women now outnumber men in the work force. Maybe. If it lets us embrace women as breadwinners, I said, that would be healthy. Even healthier: If men do their part at home and free women to keep the kinds of jobs that pay well. Listen But, like many things, this all comes down to love and sex. Some people get uneasy when women make more money and men do more childcare. Why is that? I’m guessing it’s the same reason that, until we wrote our book, I’d never heard these two facts: 1) Growing your earnings power...
Sharon Meers's picture

Societal Barriers to Breastfeeding

September 11, 2009
When people think of breastfeeding difficulties, the things that probably come to mind are supply issues, bad latch, cracked nipples, constant feedings, and the like. Certainly, there are women who are afflicted by those difficulties and who cannot overcome them. But I believe the societal barriers to breastfeeding (propagated by the kyriarchy) have a much more significant impact on breastfeeding rates than the medical or technical issues.

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