he idea of mentaking time off for paternity leave is controversial only because ofthe fact that paternity leave is still considered as issue that hasno resolution for parents or employers.
The idea of a employeelooking to add to their family used to be praised in different yearsfrom companies. Now employees live in fear due to the knowledge oftheir unborn children. This issue was mainly a woman’s issue abouthow to address her birth and still keeping her career. As societychanges the definition of paternity leave has changed as well. We are reallydiscovering that indeed it does take a village to raise a child.
Withthat being said that village does include the mother and father isthe core foundation for the child especially in the first couple ofmonths. We must firstdiscuss the argument on why men should be given more time off forpaternity leave. Men getting more time off would improve therelationship between the mother and father. Kenneth Matos, co-authorof ” The New Male Mystique” and Senior director of research atThe Families and Work Institute believes that paternity leavebolsters connection and communication between partners.
” When oneperson is at home with a new baby and the other remains at work theycan start living in different worlds and have less to talk about. Ifparents can afford to take maternity and paternity leavesimultaneously it can benefit their relationship.”(Herb,2014)Second the time off helps benefit the men with their workplace.
Vincent Dicaro, Vice President of Development and Communications forthe National Fatherhood Initiative states” Research indicates thatcompanies willing to provide this type of benefit as well as moreflexibility overall have more loyal employees, better staff retentionand higher productivity levels.”( Herb,2014) Yahoo offerseight weeks to dads and Facebook offers four months for paternityleave. Other countries have embraced their stance on offeringpaternity leave to fathers. Fathers in Norway get 10 weeks of paidleave or two weeks for fathers in France, where President FrancoisHollande is trying to extend that benefit to six months.(McGregor,2013) Men in the United States options at the time are onlylooking at FMLA. In order to obtain FMLA the men must have worked for1,250 hours at a business that has fifty employees.
Even after all ofthose prerequisites the federal government still won’t guarantee thatthe lave will be paid. Under the TrumpAdministration they are looking to enact a new law regardingpaternity leave. For men to get more time parental leave would bemandatory but not uniform:” States would be required to provide toprovide six weeks of parental leave and the proposal gives statesbroad latitude to design and finance the program”(Kurtzleben,2017) Other statesfelt that they could not wait on the government to resolve thismatter so they started to pass their own legislation hoping that thefederal government would meet them half way with the matter. SanFrancisco could be the first city in the United States to requirebusinesses to allow their new parents paid time off. Right now,California pays a little over half of a new parent’s salary duringparental leave. San Francisco city officials want businesses to startto pay the remaining 45 percent so that the parents are receiving allof their pay during their time off.(Whitman,2016)Next we will talkabout the opposing argument against men taking time off for paternityleave.
The main reasonagainst men taking time off work has to do with job security ” TheStigma of being the gut in the office who takes the maximum amount ofleave haunts many dads. It’s not the fear of losing a job exactly butthe unspoken disapproval and questions about dedication that can comewith a long leave.”( Hall,2013) The secondreason is that people think men are just only taking the time off asa vacation and to spend time with their kids. “I’m getting reallypissed off at men demanding that they get some sort of paternityleave. If they can honestly come up with a good reason why otherthan” Oh men should get to spend time with their kids too,” Iwill applaud them.
Women don’t go on maternity leave to “spend timewith their babies. Sure, that’s a part of it, but it’s not like theycan stay home and just ignore the kid. Women go on maternity leave torecover from the pain endured during childbirth,” States writerRachel Hixson( Hixson, 2016) As a man Iunderstand that I will never fully understand the depths my wife’sbody has gone through with having our daughters.
In the same respectI wanted to be there to help her with the physical pain after thelabor. My wife had two C sections. Unfortunately due to being deniedtime off I had to let my wife recover on her own. While at work I hadto know that my wife was in extreme pain but still trying to providefor our daughters. I would thinkthat having a stressed out employee would not be something anemployer would want on their hands.
As a parent I think that societyshould stop being so cold to people who want to bring life into thisworld. Society used to embrace a new life with joy and well wishes.We as society need to go back to past generations thoughts onfamilies are a great thing. We need to look at our Europeancounterparts and develop something similar or even better plan toembrace father hood in our native country. ” Peace is the beauty oflife. It is sunshine.
It is the smile of a child, the love of amother, the joy of a father, the togetherness of a family. It is theadvancement of man, the victory of a just cause, the triumph oftruth.” Menachem Begin