More Maternity Leave ??

Avatar for cmpat
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Registered: 02-21-2003
More Maternity Leave ??
10
Wed, 06-01-2011 - 1:17pm

Want Moms to Breastfeed Longer? Give Them More Maternity Leave

Women on longer maternity leaves breastfeed longer. Stop the presses, right? This not-quite-groundbreaking conclusion is the result of a recent Pediatrics study that examined the breastfeeding practices of over 6,000 mothers. It found that moms who took at least 13 weeks of maternity leave were more likely to start breastfeeding their babies than moms who only took one to six weeks of leave (74% vs. 65%). And moms who returned to work after 13 weeks were also almost twice as likely to be predominantly breastfeeding at three months as moms who went back to work before six weeks.

Big surprise, right? As a mom of four, I can attest to the fact that it’s much easier to breastfeed a baby when you’re actually in the same location as said baby than when you’re across town on a conference call. As soon as you add in breast pumps, bottles and less-than-supportive employers, breastfeeding becomes an exercise in creativity and persistence. At some point, the hassle and stress can become just too much.

Of course, there are multiple factors -- including marital status and maternal education -- that influence breastfeeding and a woman’s return to work. Still, the data was convincing enough for the researchers to conclude that “leave policies…should be instituted at all governmental and organizational levels to enable women to take sufficient time off work after delivery to properly nurture their infants.” We couldn't agree more! (...the article)

What are your thoughts? Longer leave? Daycares on work premises? I like the idea of companies having daycares in the building ... I wished for one in the neighborhood where I worked when my kids were tiny but it was a rare luxury.

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Avatar for rollmops2009
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Registered: 02-24-2009
Fri, 06-10-2011 - 2:49am

Well, as a Dane I find US family policy almost punitive. Danes get a year of paid parental leave after the birth of a child. My brother and his wife split it with each taking 6 months with each of their kids. It gives everyone a chance to ease into family life. I also think that decent family leave and childcare make it much more likely that women will participate in the work force.

Avatar for cmpat
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Registered: 02-21-2003
Fri, 06-10-2011 - 10:06am
Interesting. My dh has similar comments about his grandparents and their grandparents when everyone was in Europe (they are all Flemish). Says it's not uncommon for the family home to have several generations living together where the eldest teach the new parents and the new parents have the elders to watch over the children if they go out into the workforce. Sounds like a good way of life that was sadly abandoned when families settled over here. ..
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Avatar for rollmops2009
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Registered: 02-24-2009
Fri, 06-10-2011 - 10:45am

That has died out in Europe too though, although it used to be common in many places. You still get it in Greece (and probably other places in the Mediterranean too). As long as everyone gets along ok, I think it can be a great solution and a way to maximize the productivity of an extended clan.

Avatar for cmpat
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Registered: 02-21-2003
Fri, 06-10-2011 - 4:55pm

My dh grew up in northern Alberta and some of the folks that settled up there tended to be somewhat like the old country, for example, the mom and dad (his gr/grandparents) came over here when they heard you could farmstead or buy a quarter section for a few dollars .. they built a home just big enough for the 2 of them and to start a family with the intention of farming the land, gaining income from it, having more kids to help with the farm, and so on. Then they built a nicer larger house and used the first small house as a guest house sort of thing .. or their kids could improve upon it and use it as their first home when the oldest got married, anyway, you know the ways that I mean. And I agree, if everyone gets along it's great. Dh wanted no part of the farm however so he was the first to break away. He joined the forces and after serving for 20 years settled in southern Alberta. Now we travel up north as his brother and sister stayed there. But I digress lol!
Hope you have a good weekend, take care :)

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Avatar for mom34101
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Registered: 03-27-2003
Sat, 06-11-2011 - 12:56pm
Well, I agree, but every time this comes up on these boards, I get surprised by how many wohms don't support this.
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Registered: 02-24-2009
Sat, 06-11-2011 - 1:21pm

Well, the counter argument is usually that it is too expensive and cumbersome for business. Obviously it does cost money, but everyone pays in, much as you pay into disability and unemployment insurance in the US. Secondly, after some trepidation about the whole thing, business seems to have adjusted. One of the upsides, I think, is that people get hired for temp positions to fill in for parents off on parental leave. This is a good way for younger workers to build CVs, and often they end up getting a more permanent position in one of the businesses where they temp.

Avatar for mom34101
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Registered: 03-27-2003
Sun, 06-12-2011 - 3:21pm
Yes, which tends to go along political lines. But I also think that some wohms see longer maternity leave as an unwelcome implication that sah with your baby is a good thing.
Avatar for rollmops2009
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Registered: 02-24-2009
Mon, 06-13-2011 - 2:10am

I never thought of that angle, but if true, that is a sad commentary on how this discussion is framed in the US.

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Registered: 05-28-2011
Tue, 06-14-2011 - 11:11am

I've read articles on daycare premises on the job sight and have found them to be wonderful for the most part.

Avatar for cmpat
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Registered: 02-21-2003
Tue, 06-14-2011 - 1:19pm

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