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Paid Leave Makes Horse Sense

July 28, 2010
Vacations are good for your health . And, you don’t need to get away to any fancy Caribbean retreat to get the benefit of time-off from work. But it helps if you are a horse. In New York City, that is. The City’s Health Department has proposed new rules for those horses hitched to carriages that carry tourists around parts of town. If implemented, the horses would get 5 weeks of job-protected vacation . During their time off, the horses would continue to enjoy their standard payment – room and board, along with grooming. It is a reasonable business decision to invest in these workers since...
Jodie Levin-Epstein's picture

Work-life balance: Finding the Swede spot

July 27, 2010
A quiet revolution has been taking place in Sweden for 15 years, affecting everything from the gender pay gap to workplace culture to relationships between parents and children. It all started at home. Here’s a link to the fascinating New York Times story about this phenomenon. Now here’s my distilled version—with original illustrations! This Swedish family* doesn’t look very happy. That’s because for decades Sweden has had the same problems we have in the U.S., with men and women seemingly confined to traditional roles when it came to working and raising kids. Although the country had paid...
Katrina Alcorn's picture

Dutch Study Pumps Breastfeeding, Support Still Lacking

July 21, 2010
I write, occasionally, about breastfeeding and bottlefeeding. I try, when I do, to present a balanced approach. It is challenging at times - to reconcile the choices I've made personally with my own children, with evidence-based studies and information that seems to come out regularly pointing to the overwhelming health benefits of exclusive breastfeeding; with the anger and frustration some women share over their own guilt about not breastfeeding their children; or the frustration they feel that they are made to feel guilty about the choices they've made. It's a fine line one walks between...

Who clips the nails? Survey results are in!

July 19, 2010
Thanks to everyone who took my "Who clips the nails?" survey. The results are in! Below is a summary. I'm posting the detailed results, comments, and analysis now and throughout the week on my blog: workingmomsbreak.com . Overview Even though studies show fathers are changing more diapers and folding more laundry than ever, mothers are still bearing most of the "psychic burden" of parenting—the scheduling, organizing, and myriad little tasks that fall to the primary caregiver. A month ago, I put together a survey asking parents how they divide certain responsibilities at home, and linked to...
Katrina Alcorn's picture

This sucks: Breast pumping at work

July 14, 2010
Many of our employers and coworkers remain woefully ignorant about breastfeeding; without realizing it, they put us in situations that can be thoroughly humiliating.
Katrina Alcorn's picture

Breastfeeding - A Secret Weapon To Save Billions of Dollars

June 24, 2010
The American Academy of Pediatrics' prestigious journal, Pediatrics , recently released a cost analysis on breastfeeding . The bottom line: The United States could save $13 billion annually if 90 percent of families were able to comply with medical recommendations to breastfeed exclusively for six months. This could also prevent over 900 infant deaths in our nation, for which of course, there is no price tag. No brainer, right? So then why are only about 14 percent of all U.S. mothers able to breastfeed exclusively up to the six month doctor-recommended period, according to the Centers for...
Mary O's picture

Who Needs More Women in Government? Dads.

June 17, 2010
As the first-time mother of an 8-month-old, I’m often concerned with making the world better for my daughter as she grows up. But every day, I also realize that I’m not in this struggle alone. Not only are there millions of moms out there trying to figure out how to balance work, a personal life, and a child (or three)— there are also millions of fathers that now have to face the same challenges. According to CAWP , Elected women are working to make the agenda of legislative institutions more reflective of women's concerns stemming from their roles as caregivers in the family and in society...

Survey: Who clips their nails?

June 15, 2010
Studies show today’s fathers are doing significantly more child care and housework than their fathers did. Here’s my question: Are these dads just folding more laundry, or are they also taking responsibility for the complicated logistics of family life? And here’s my other question: Do heterosexual couples divide up chores differently than gay and lesbian couples? A friend of mine, one of two moms raising a child together, suggested to me that straight couples might have something to learn from same-sex couples about egalitarian parenting. Is this true? So I put together a short survey to...
Katrina Alcorn's picture

Herd feelings

June 2, 2010
Working mothers are not crackheads. Having children is not just another lifestyle choice. If we want to keep this little human experiment going, then we need a sizable chunk of the population to keep having children.
Katrina Alcorn's picture

A mother of a day

May 11, 2010
I can't think of a better way to say this. I had a truly crappy Mother's Day this year. I think Anna Jarvis would understand. Inspired by her own mother's life, she started a campaign in 1907 to recognize mothers for their contribution to society. She was successful in making Mother's Day a national holiday, but then spent the rest of her life fighting its commercial exploitation. She died in an asylum when she was 84. A printed card means nothing except that you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world. And candy! You take a box to Mother—and then...
Katrina Alcorn's picture

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