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Maternity Leave in the US: Crowdsourcing for Better Policies

Maternity Leave in the US: Crowdsourcing Better Policies for All

Think maternity leave in the US is a hopeless situation? A new online database of leave policies for American companies could trigger positive change.

How many moms have struggled with the financial and emotional stress of a less than ideal maternity leave situation? How many got maternity leave in the US at all? How many moms really knew what their company’s leave policy was before having a child – or before taking the job?

Family leave is a fact of life for every working mother, but sadly it is rarely discussed at negotiating tables or job interviews. Most American workers are in the dark about their leave benefits until they need them, and struggle to understand them once they do. However, leave policies have real effects on maternal and child health as well as wages, promotions and job satisfaction.

Sad facts about maternity leave in the US

For example, women without adequate leave are less likely to breastfeed and more likely to suffer from depression. Paid leave has even been linked to a 10% reduction in infant mortality, making it literally a life or death issue.

Economically, women can lose 25% of their annual income each year they have a child. And they often miss out on promotions, bonuses and find their career trajectory altered.

Right now in the U.S., 44% of workers remain without access to any leave at all and only 13% of workers have access to paid leave. Shockingly, almost 25% of mothers return to work within two weeks after childbirth.

Too many mothers are still forced to choose between their job and their family.

Enter: List Your Leave

Think maternity leave in the US is a hopeless situation? A new online database of leave policies for American companies could trigger positive change.

When companies support their workers in creating both a successful career and a rewarding family life, both benefit tremendously. Data supports this, and List Your Leave believes the way to achieve this for all American workers is through transparency.

What if you knew what your company’s leave policy was during the interview process? What if it was acceptable to discuss and negotiate family leave the same way it is vacation time, medical benefits and retirement? What if transparency around leave policies removed the stigma of discussing leave?

Too many mothers are still forced to choose between their job and their family. A new website aims to change that by becoming the Yelp of maternity leave policies.

Use List Your Leave to get smart on leave while job searching, preparing for a leave, or just because its important for all working mothers to join in the conversation. List Your Leave was founded by a group of working professionals who created this resource after watching friends, colleagues and family members struggle with the issue of family leave.

By sharing your experience on List Your Leave you can not only help out other moms trying to make sense of their leave benefits, you can help all companies know how much paid leave matters to working families.

If employees care about leave, companies will, too.

Small LogoList Your Leave is a free database of leave policies and a platform for transparent information sharing, policy reviews, and company culture ratings. List Your Leave was founded by a group of young working professionals dedicated to both work and family. Our mission is to create a dialogue between American companies and families about leave policies. If employees care about family leave, companies will too. Visit List Your Leave to add a company review and search company policies and follow them on Twitter and Facebook.


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2 thoughts on “Maternity Leave in the US: Crowdsourcing Better Policies for All

  1. I love this. There are a few different platforms right now with family-friendly policy info, but of course nothing will be really effective unless it’s widely adopted. Employers have to know that their info is available to job-seekers if they’re going to really be pushed to change policies. An alternative option would be to federally mandate all businesses to list their policies at a central site. (There’s no real cost to the employer — and just an administrative cost to govt.) It would be a similar kind of mandate as “net price calculators” are for parents looking for the true cost of college — and would create the universal transparency we need. In any case, a push from the market and govt could be effective.

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