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M: Maternity/Paternity Leave

Paid family leave combats poverty, gives children a healthy start, and lowers the wage gap between women and men by providing structural support to balance work and family.

Selena's Story

Selena's baby boy, Connor, was born six weeks early. As Connor was rushed to the Neonatal Intensive Care unit, Selena found herself alone in a hospital bed realizing that she was going to go home well before her baby. "There was no way we could afford for me to take off more than we planned,” recalls Selena. So after Selena had the baby on Thursday, she was released from the hospital Friday, and was back at her desk on Monday morning. “It was the hardest two and a half weeks of my life,” she says recalling the ache of being away from her newborn son.

Click here to watch a segment of the Motherhood Manifesto documentary to learn more about Selena's story and why we all need access to paid family and medical leave.


Know the Facts

  • Right now only 13 (!!!) percent of Americans have access to paid family leave through their employer and only 37% have personal medical leave provided through an employer.
  • Although the current Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows some employees to take up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave, it only covers about 60 percent of employees.
  • A quarter of all poverty spells in the United States are because of having a baby.
  • The U.S is one of the only countries in the world that doesn't offer paid leave to new mothers.
  • Paid family leave has been shown to reduce infant mortality by as much as 20% (and the U.S. ranks a low 37th of all countries in infant mortality).
  • Paid leave improves worker retention, which saves employers money through reduced turnover cost.


What You Can Do

MomsBlogging on Maternity & Paternity Leave

Birth & Maternal Health Resource Book Launch

Posted December 11, 2017 by Nadia

We at MomsRising are excited to share our first Birth & Maternal Health Resource Book with you! It’s for partners, legislators and everyday folks who want to learn more about the problematic state of maternal morbidity/mortality in our nation. The book also serves as an advocacy tool to champion policies and solutions that can address [...]

New York's Paid Family Leave Law Coming Jan. 2018! Learn more

Posted December 8, 2017 by Molly Weston Williamson

Hey New York moms! New York passed a great paid family leave law that kicks in January 1, 2018. For more information, visit A Better Balance or call 1-833-NEED-ABB.   What does the paid family leave law do for new moms? The law guarantees new moms time off to bond with a new child (including adopted and [...]

Posted Under: paid family leave

FREE Family Celebrations in Washington State!

Posted November 15, 2017 by Casey Osborn-Hinman

MomsRising is hosting FREE family celebrations in Des Moines, Everett, and Auburn, Washington featuring live musical entertainment by kid-entertainer extraordinaire Eli Rosenblatt, arts and crafts by Seattle Recreative, face painting, and plenty of kid- and adult-friendly food to go around. Why are we celebrating? Because beginning in 2020, all Washington workers will have access to [...]

Coffee & Advocacy w/ MomsRising in WA State

Posted November 15, 2017 by Casey Osborn-Hinman

The holidays are upon us and it’s a great time of year to reflect, give thanks, and build community with family, friends, and neighbors. MomsRising members across Washington State are gathering to do just that. Please say you’ll join us!  MomsRising staff will be traveling the state to share more about Washington’s new paid family [...]

More from the Blog

#KeepMarching: It’s a Year End Match!

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A $25 gift becomes $50. Your $100 gift become $200!

Thank you. Your support means everything to us.

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