Parental Leave and Child Care
Welcoming children to your family can be a rollercoaster of emotions and energy. Many folks – women and men – seek to take protected and/or paid time off from work so that they can reasonably adjust to their new reality; this often includes infant and child care, post-childbirth recovery, and/or acclimating to becoming a new foster or adoptive parent. Unfortunately, in 21st century America, parental leave is not a guaranteed right. In fact, per the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in 2016, the United States was the only country among 41 nations that did not mandate any paid leave for new mothers and fathers.
Unfortunately, the challenges of working and parenting don't end there as child care is also a significant concern and expense for working mothers and fathers. Finding affordable, quality child care in America has become increasingly difficult; simultaneously, while child care must be affordable, it is also critical that caregivers earn a living wage for caring for our nation's children.
Thankfully, there are many amazing individuals and organizations doing good work on the issues of parental leave and child care. On the right side of the page, we’ve curated a list of national organizations with which you can connect and take action. Be sure to also do a search online, including on social media, to identify and partner with organizations working on parental leave and child care issues in your state or your community.