It probably is hard as an employer but every business is playing on the same field. It's not like "Well, I won't participate in that because my competition would have an advantage over me". It's not optional and it's illegal to fire someone over it. Every business with employees has to accept this will happen eventually. The only optional choice (which my employer does) is to cover the other 45% of the pay for a certain number of weeks.
Interestingly, often you hear about people getting in at businesses because "they had a temp opening because of a mat-leave!". This works a lot like an internship, where the employer gets to test out a potential employee while not committing to them since the person on leave will be back on a specific date. Great way to get experience and networking for young people.
My teammate, for example, left a few weeks ago when his child was born. He'll be back in January. Sucks for our team to work without him that long, but it's nice to know that if I decide to have kids that option will be there for me too.
Many employers will top off to 80% or 100% for some period of time, but I don’t know of any companies that do 18 months.
> Interestingly, often you hear about people getting in at businesses because "they had a temp opening because of a mat-leave!". This works a lot like an internship, where the employer gets to test out a potential employee while not committing to them since the person on leave will be back on a specific date. Great way to get experience and networking for young people.
You’re failing to articulate the down side of this. Both as a direct consequence (backfill) and indirect consequence (not wanting FTEs that can disappear for multiple 18 month periods with no recourse), there are far more recurring contract-only positions.
I know multiple people that are stuck in perpetually-renewed annual contracts, no security and no benefits. At least two of those cases started as backfill, and as you note.. they did a good enough job that the employer wanted them to stay. But why would they actually risk hiring young women of child bearing age?
(Just to cut off the obvious criticism, several of the people that I’m aware of actually work for the government, directly and indirectly. Canada has a big public sector.)
Why would they risk hiring young women, regardless? With mandatory parental leave some of the risk of absenteeism shifts to men, which means women are comparatively less of an absentee risk. Likewise, the costs (onboarding, insurance, etc) are also shared across the sexes which makes women comparatively less costly to hire.
Whether society is overall better off is a different question. And whether women come out ahead is still ultimately an empirical question. But "gotcha" arguments about how the unintended consequences of such well meaning policies will have the opposite effect aren't very persuasive to me.
In general, I’d like to think we could define generous parental leave policies that a) don’t achieve their ends by forcing consequences onto businesses and the labor market, b) don’t tie parental benefits to insurable earnings.
Seriously how messed up is (b)? Sorry, you had a hard time holding down a job last year, so we’re going to give you much less than the person who doesn’t need it.
Much different bucket than America's contracts without bennies.
I haven’t written “just an opinion”. It’s self-evident that the generous mandatory policy changes incentives for businesses. My data itself is anecdotal of course, so the extent of impact is unknown — but I felt it important to clarify that these policies are not without negative effects (in addition to the obvious positive ones).
It’s not helpful to say you’re providing numbers, and cite only Canada’s fertility rate. And? A much more useful number would be the number of temporary jobs vs. permanent. Unfortunately, in Canada temporary jobs have been growing much faster than permanent positions over the past twenty years . (Not a hard connection, but Canada’s major parental leave change coincidentally came around 2000, which made it 52 weeks.)
Obviously I understand there are many factors at work there. But this is probably one. I similarly understand there are many factors that cause public institutions to hire contractors. I pointed that out only to highlight that it’s not just “bad actors” engaging in this behavior.
On that note, if government has sufficient incentives to kill permanent positions in favor of temporary ones (and you cite this), then isn’t self-evident that additional incentives in private industry would also lead to more of that behavior broadly? Of course. Is society still better off? IMHO probably, but 18 months seems excessive.
I think if society truly values early childhood development, there are ways to support parents other than forcing private businesses to “keep a position” for years.
This is also why I don't buy the arguments common from millennials regarding why they're choosing not to have children. Setting aside the fact that such choices are hardly as selfless as they appear, the people I would most want to have children are the very ones both economically capable and ethically willing to be so considerate. This is true even if (and I assume it so) the decisions of other less consideration-capable people are entirely independent.
More concretely, if you're concerned about global warming, the carrying capacity of the world, ecological stewardship, etc then one of the worst things you could possibly do is not have a family. Whether to have your own biological children or adopt is a more complex issue, but suffice it say simply choosing not to have kids doesn't further the supposed ethical goals. That's less living what you preach and more an abdication of responsibility.
If you consider making sure your own particular genepool sustains, as your prime directive, then sure, power to you. When it comes to sustaining humanity, then there is something to be said about sustaining global resources, relaxing supply, improving literacy levels, maximizing public funds, human happiness indexes, etc. that have all long correlated lower population densities with better outcomes.
So long as there exists substantial income inequality in a nation, such as is the case in the U.S., the middle- and upper-middle class need to literally raise future generations of themselves. Otherwise they're de facto abdicating political power to the rich elite and poor masses. And even if eventually the poor masses produce what will become the new middle class, there can still be substantial regressions in political values in the interim, which in the context of accelerating global warming is extremely costly. We've literally seen this--as income inequality has grown in the U.S., and as the stable middle-class has declined, we've become a much more conservative nation.
There's no more effective way to perpetuate your values than through your own children. Education of other people's children is not very effective or efficient, at least beyond basic skills like reading and writing. Ask any teacher, especially teachers with children of their own. And in any event people who don't have children aren't engaged in those aspects of our society designed to socialize the young. If you are intent on educating other children, what better way than to have empathetic children of your own who can model your values and keep you productively engaged?
I'm not arguing that educated and conscientious groups need to somehow out reproduce everybody else, or even match the reproductive rate of other groups. I'm certainly not saying it's a genetic phenomenon, or that it's equivalent to genetic-based phenomenons in terms of the role of reproduction. But having no children whatsoever and persuading similarly situated people to abstain, well that's a different matter entirely.
The fact of the matter is that we know the more educated, wealthy, and independent people are--especially women--that the fewer children they'll have. We see it across cultures. That's good. But it also means that in the presence of disparities in those factors, there exists a dynamic that slows down the reduction in reproductive rate. To accelerate the reduction in reproduction as well as other ecological pressures (reduced carbon consumption, etc), you have to strategically ensure that political policies which diminish inequality, and which in the interim directly mitigate global warming, persist and expand. In democracies where every vote is nominally the same, where educated groups have higher rates of voting and political participation, and where both political preferences and economic mobility are sticky across generations, you can't ignore the implications. At best advocating for fewer children is pointless as it'll happen regardless; at worst it's counter productive.
 I bet there's a correlation between rate of slowdown in reproduction with low Gini coefficients. For example, Japan. I haven't tested it but I'm gonna put it on my todo list. (Immigration is a confounder in terms of reproduction rate, but I bet it also tends to positively correlate with inequality, and in any event the destination for immigrants are richer nations with much higher per capita resource consumption... but I digress.)
so... this is a meame that seems really weird to me. I've heard a lot of people opine on why the poor do, in fact, vote against public benefits and for huge tax cuts for the rich.
But the data doesn't back it up. Pretty consistently, poorer people tend to vote democrat, and wealthier people tend to vote republican. This was true in the last election, too. And this is exactly what you'd expect, considering.
The former may be effective, but considering the effort and resources it takes to bring up children and the impact additional people will have on the environment, it is at least possible that it is not efficient at all.
You fail to articulate as to why having kids would be beneficial for the environment. Sorry but you sound like a bitter parent envious of other people's time and freedom, you know, misery loves company. Are you also worried about the disappearance of the white race and the replacement by immigrants?
Having a kid or not isn't selfless or selfish, is simply not anyone's business except for the two involved.
There will still be a next generation if Millenials and post-Millenials in developed economies decide to not have children due to environmental concerns, just like there was a next generation after the baby boomer women took to their careers with as much dedication as men.
There will be a next generation. End of story. But its superstar engineers won't be white.
Also, they recently added a new parental leave benefit for the secondary caregiver so they can take 5/8 weeks off. It's a "use or it lose it" benefit, meaning you can't add it to the primary caregiver's leave. This effectively amounts to a paternal leave benefit that most everyone will now take, shifting the focus away from women (slightly) when a child is on the way.
You mean the system where, in upwards of 90% of cases, women take 50 weeks of leave and men take 5 weeks? I wouldn't call that a great system, personally.
Personally, I'd be happier if the 40 weeks of "parental" leave was required to be split 20/20 (subject to obvious exemptions if there is no second parent who is eligible for EI). This would still leave women with 75% more leave than men -- but I think that's a reasonable compromise given that the maternity leave is intended to cover time when a birth mother is medically unable to work, recovering from birth, etc.
Fuck this idea that traditional gender roles are meaningless.
Breast feeding is absolutely important, but if you think that's the only thing you need to do in order to take care of a newborn, you might be in for a shock.
Breastfeeding is a necessary part of taking care of a newborn that men cannot do. Women can do all the parts that you listed, plus the vital component of breastfeed. Hence, it makes sense to encourage moms to stay home with babies. Dads should stay home too, because the ideal is for mom and dad to be at home playing with babies (isn't that everyone's dream??). However, most people are not independently wealthy, so compromises are made, and dad goes to work.
My larger point is, we shouldn't throw the traditional gender role baby out with the breast milk bath water. People have different preferences / requirements, and they should be allowed to make the choice to conform to traditional gender roles if they so choose, rather than forcing a 50 / 50 split of parental leave where there is some clear biological differences. The obvious ones being men lack mammary glands and uterus / ovaries.
The invariant need is a child that has a loving home environment and is well fed.
Living in Canada as an American citizen, I deeply appreciate the leave benefits we have here in Canada/Quebec.
I couldn’t agree more that the needs of the child is paramount.
What I mean to say is that there needs to be significant social welfare towards the wellbeing of children.
That typically means two people chosen by the mother could be delegated a minimum set of care hours for the life of the child, paid for by the state.
I couldn’t give a hoot who or what plays those roles.
The direction this conversation took is breaking my brain.
We have only to look at the decades in the US where babies were often formula-fed instead of breast-fed.
While there are certainly advantages to breast feeding, it is not necessary.
Your "to be at home playing with babies" should be "taking care of".
My dream was to raise children, not just play with them. Dads also need to be involved in changing, and feeding, and washing, and yes, even bottle feeding because Mom is so tired that she just needs to collapse, or because I want to take the 4 month old out to a baby meet at the library and not plan around being back home for feeding - whenever that is.
Nor was I the only father of a 4 month there, with bottled milk so Mom could have a break at home.
Sure, but it does have positive health benefits for mom and baby and is cheaper than formula. In order to continue to breast feed the baby to two years (as recommended by the WHO), the mother needs to actually breastfeed the baby. Using pumps can result in milk supply lowering, not because pumping is incapable of keeping up milk supply, but because without the hunger cues of a newborn, the mother doesn't typically pump as much and as long as a newborn would. Moreover, the oxytocin from holding the newborn and the hormones released when the newborn cries keep the mother's supply up. There is no way to replicate this in an office. It requires a baby.
My solution to this 'problem' is to create a society in which moms can stay home with their babies and simultaneously, for those women who choose to work, normalize bringing your child to work. Not only does this keep mom and baby together, but it also means there will be adorable babies in offices everywhere.
Before boldly proclaiming winning in something that is not even a competition, I think it's worth it to understand the argument.
Now you say you didn't write that?
Of course there's going to be circumstances where, for whatever reason, breastfeeding isn't optimal or even an option.
Isn't that like "Wearing a bicycle helmet - when and where it makes sense to do so - is a necessary part of riding a bicycle."
That is, your addition negates the seemingly firm statement of "necessary", while the later use of "vital" seems to support the firm intent of "necessary".
It is cruel to mother, father, and child to force a father to take care of a newborn or < 1 yr old without the mother. The newborn is used to the mother's body. A newborn gets stressed being away from its mother and source of food, even when with the dad. Breastfeeding from the breast is not just a source of nutrition but also a source of comfort for the baby, and healthy for the mom (both physically and mentally). Men do not have this need or ability.
Putting a man at home with his newborn, without the mother, is a recipe for disaster. Not because a man cannot do the actions required to take care of a baby in this circumstance, but because, if the woman wants to do the recommended thing for her child (breastfeed him or her), then she would have to pump (which is a lot of work) and store her milk (a lot of work). Oh also, she'd have to do this at work, which again makes her unequal to her male colleagues. The man would have to disinfect and clean bottles, and be unable to soothe a child if he runs out of milk (unless he has formula on hand). The child doesn't get the human touch of breastfeeding.
So to recap... the mother loses because, despite going to work for the sake of 'equality', she's stuck every few hours pumping milk, losing work time her male colleagues can use to further their career. The baby loses because it doesn't get the psychological security of suckling at the breast. The father loses because he is simply less able to calm the baby down and feed it than the mother.
By all means, help men to stay home with their older children. This is great, but a father with a newborn is simply a bad idea, IMO. Formula is possible, but from a public health perspective, it should be discouraged unless necessary.
I will never understand why people make parenting harder on themselves. Newborns are hard enough, but the human body has an easy way to fix it. Whenever my daughter is fussy, she goes straight back to her mom for comfort nursing, and then when she's done, she's back to me for fun times. This is easier for everyone involved, and fosters a positive father-child relationship.
Both my wife and brother-in-law were breastfed whenever they were fussy, and it always calmed them down, according to MIL and FIL. Not being breastfed myself, I didn't believe it at first. But sure enough, with my daughter, literally all problems can be solved by suckling for a minute at her mother's breast. Why make this harder on ourselves? By the time she's back with me, she's happy, laughing, and ready for tickles and fun, and mom can get a well-deserved break.
And a man who can't disinfect and clean bottles is going to hate it when he finds out about diapers :)
Where in my post did I say men can't do this? I just said it is many times more inconvenient for a man to do this, than for a woman to breast feed. Inconvenience experienced over time is another way of saying stress.
Honestly, I'm going to bow out of the conversation now. I realize that my wife and I make several choices to maximize our convenience that would seem odd to other couples. My basic idea is to just go with the way natural selection made your bodies act and don't add pressure to do anything different. It's much much much easier that way.
You still need to wake up to pump, and whether pumping or breastfeeding it does not change how many times you (the baby) wake up at night in general.
I know several men who have taken parental leave to be the primary caregiver for their >newborn but <1 year olds, while their wives return to work. It was cruel for neither the father, mother, nor child.
Your argument, I believe, is that if the mother dies in childbirth, then it is cruel for the father to take care of the child. In that case, what do we do? Or does that follow under the "necessary" exception which allows cruelty?
It might just be that it isn't actually cruel.
> I know several men who have taken parental leave to be the primary caregiver for their >newborn but <1 year olds, while their wives return to work. It was cruel for neither the father, mother, nor child.
I hate the term 'primary caregiver'. Mom and Dad are primary caregiver, independent of whether they are working, staying at home, etc.
> Your argument, I believe, is that if the mother dies in childbirth, then it is cruel for the father to take care of the child. In that case, what do we do? Or does that follow under the "necessary" exception which allows cruelty?
Well no. This is a strawman. Above, in my previous comment, I said it is cruel to mom, dad, and child. I even mentioned the inconvenience of mom pumping milk. If mom is dead, then this arrangement cannot be cruel to her, and she cannot be inconvenienced by pumping milk. A straightforward and benevolent reading of my comment would have you believe that it does not apply to cases in which mom has died.
This is a rare enough occurrence that policies that seek to work well with the norm can't really be criticized for not addressing it.
> It might just be that it isn't actually cruel.
Or it might be that we as a society are used to being cruel to both women and children.
Is this cruel? Not "is it inconvenient", but is it - your term - "cruel"?
(I double-checked, and "primary caregiver" is the correct term for that situation. It is not exclusionary as both parents may be primary caregivers at the same time. Also, the primary caregiver may be another relative or friend, and not always the mother or father.)
Also, what does "cruel" mean to you? Babies aren't acculturated, so societal expectations don't really apply to judging the responses of a 4 month old. Do you mean they cry more? Do they have lower levels of oxycotin? Or how else do you figure out that a society has been making a mistake in how it deals with babies?
Breast milk is not a fixed product. Rather, the suckling action as well as pathogens present in the baby cause it to change its composition. It contains antibodies for the baby if the child is sick, and its fat/sugar ratios change depending on the age of the baby (via suckling). Pumping removes this feedback loop from the mother. There is little research here, but preliminary research (https://psmag.com/economics/unseen-consequences-pumping-brea...) demonstrates several negative effects of pumping. Pumping often produces too much foremilk (high in sugar), rather than hind milk (high in fat), because pumping doesn't work in the way baby's mouths do.
As for comfort. I think most babies are comforted by feeding. However, with formula, you have to be careful not to overfeed. You can't really overfeed with breastfeeding. The maximal amount of calories the child can get is whatever amount his mother is eating, so if mom is eating the right amount, the baby will get it.
I fully support leave, but leave it up to parents how they want to split it.
I apologise if this infers offence but the way that this reads is that you're not interested in child-rearing so one must ask the question that begs: "Is there a point in having children if you've no interest in their upbringing?"
It makes my partner happy, and as I said, I don't want to do it full time. I still make an active effort raising them when I'm not working my day job (mornings, nights, weekends).
I don't see how those two situations equate. One is an impossibility, due to circumstance (e.g.: on the battlefield), and other is the willful knowledge that you want nothing to do with their upbringing because, using the OC's words, "I’d rather be earning a large dollar amount (doing something I enjoy) than child-rearing...".
Edit: In other words, there's no direct implication that everyone in the military, working abroad, or long-haul trucking wants nothing to do with child-raising. I'd imagine the situation is actually the inverse but the economic necessity for that work to be done (to provide a living) is what prevents that.
If you don't like those examples, consider a family with two busy working parents sending their child to boarding school. If they can afford a boarding school, they've got plenty of income. One or both of them could simply switch to a normal 9-5 job.
toomuchtodo would not be the first person to hand their child off for others to deal with, even if the decision to do so is hard for most people to understand :)
But if your objective is to fight traditional roles about caregiving it makes sense that you’d prefer that other people didn’t have choices.
That's a reasonable concern, but I think
requiring the parental leave to be split isn't a reasonable solution.
In a lot of families, that will just create serious problems without any real upside.
I don't have a good solution to suggest, but there has to be some leeway for families to work those details out themselves without having to justify their choices so as to be granted an exception.
First, many women will take on more the childcare burden regardless of the financial incentives that exist. That domestic labor ought to be recognized as real labor, and as such, be paid.
There's also a class angle: Many low income women would rather be doing childcare than crappy low wage work, because the oppression of a boss is worse than the oppression of their domestic arrangements.
Who would do the paying in this scenario? The children? Aren't they (the children) ultimately the beneficiaries of the aforementioned labour - in the same regard as an employer is the beneficiary of an employee's labour?
I don't understand how that premise would work-out - unless you had a system, like the social security system in the states, where the current generations are paying for the prior; however, even as that system demonstrates, it would eventually become insolvent as the population growth continues unabated.
https://globalnews.ca/news/3230205/women-work-more-than-men-... - "Women work more than men and it’s impacting their health, study says"
"According to a recent study by the Australian National University, women (on average) work fewer hours at the office. But when taking unpaid domestic labour and care-giving into account, they’re going above and beyond their “workhour-health limits.”" ...
"Men, the researchers say, are able to dedicate more time at work because they spend less time on housework, which gives them an edge in their career, co-author Lyndall Strazdins tells Broadly.
In fact, men get 100 extra hours a year to advance their careers, she says."
and https://www.theguardian.com/society/2012/mar/10/housework-ge... - "Forty years of feminism – but women still do most of the housework?"
"Nick Pearce, director of IPPR. "Women still shoulder the overwhelming burden of household tasks, particularly after they have had children. When they earn more, their bargaining power with their partners increases, so closing the gender pay gap would help. Universal childcare, rather than tax relief for nannies or cleaners, is also the best way forward for a family-friendly, more equal Britain."
And https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wages_for_housework :
"The International Wages for Housework Campaign was a feminist global social movement, which grew out of the International Feminist Collective in Italy in 1972 and organized resistance and public debate on the social formations produced by gendered labor and reproductive labor, for example domestic work such as housework, childcare, gender discrimination, and the socially reinforced performance of gender roles, gendered desire, and leisure inequality. The Campaign's platform included the women's right to work outside of the home, unemployment benefits, parental leave, and equal pay."
The history section includes the term 'oppression' directly:
"A number of early feminists focused women's economic independence along with the role of housewife in relation to women's oppression. In 1898 Charlotte Perkins Gilman published Women and Economics. This book argued for paid housework 74 years before the International Wages for Housework Campaign was founded as well as arguing to expand the definition of women in the home."
So yes, you can have benefits, but not everyone is happy to pay for it. For each Canadian that takes generous leaves there are hundreds of other people willing to work without it. I am just stating facts, not supporting any side (I live in Europe, we have long leaves too).
You mean the "mother"?
Surrogates exist, for example. Folks give infants up for adoption. In this case, you can wind up with a mother who didn't birth the child and a person who gave birth, yet didn't actually become a mother except in a loose sense of the word.
On the sadder end, stillbirths still happen and society doesn't really consider this person to be a mother. (I'm personally fine with whatever the parents choose to be called).
Just the same, the law says that the two parents can share the weeks of work off, not "mother and father", as that's clearly not always going to be an accurate representation.
It's not political correctness, just accuracy in terms.
Anyway, to get a little more on-topic: lots of us tech company employees are incredibly blessed when it comes to parental leave. Take. Every. Day. Not only is it practically a physical requirement (I don't care what you think, if you're heading into the office with a two week old baby at home you're not getting enough sleep to do anything productive) it's also an amazing opportunity to bond with your child. Your coworkers might moan or judge you. If they do, they're assholes. And who cares, you will move jobs in a few years anyway. You don't owe your employer anything. Take the leave.
Given your other comment, though, it sounds like your concern isn’t “taxpayers” paying for family leave, it’s you. So yes, ultimately, you, productive member of society, might be paying for other, “unproductive” members of society (as defined by you) to have kids.
You sound grumpy about this arrangement. Of course, as an upstanding citizen, you’ve never taken advantage of incentives or benefits paid for by other taxpayers, right? And of course you’ve never had the assistance of a government program, or it was different because it was for something “not in your control” — unlike having kids.
This attitude rubs me the wrong way, hence my less-than-civil response. It’s like the people who hate public transit because they only drive, not realizing that public transit takes other cars off the road and improves their own commutes. Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face.
Many people here believe that caring for your kids should be the parent's responsibility, not anybody else's.
googling "canada paternity maternity leave abuse" gets no matching hits. show me
>The low income people have a huge number of children (2 sisters with 33 kids in total were most discussed) just to live on taxpayers money, they never worked between childbirths.
average number of children in canada in 2011 was less than 2.
how many standard deviations away from that mean is ~16 children? so you're talking about decrying a social policy that overwhelmingly improves outcomes for women, children, and communities
because some poor person somewhere once had a bunch of kids.
these are distorted facts (or what we in /my/ country, like to call fake news).
And as others have said, it is unpaid. If you are poor, unpaid leave is basically no leave, even if it is protected. You can be too poor to take leave.
I'll also mention that FMLA is only for full time employees, so part time workers can still get fired for attendance, though they are likely to get some unemployment.
I joined a company a couple months ago but prior to accepting, I asked the CEO what their paternity policy was because I disclosed we are expecting in December. He responded that they have a "wonderful" policy so I accepted. After starting, HR provided me with the employee handbook but there was no mention of maternity or paternity leave. I asked where it was and HR stated the company "does not have a maternity or paternity policy" and said my accrued PTO of 1-week by the time December hits should suffice. I just want to jump ship now.
Update: I am in California
Also, that seems like a very short-term strategy to be taking with hiring. He may not have a long-term strategy for the company.
I would suggest you jump as soon as you're able.
When someone answers with a generality, then beware because of:
- interpersonal differences in the mapping between words and numbers
Let's say you're thinking about joining an expensive coding bootcamp. You ask about the chance of you getting an engineering job earning more than $100k after finishing.
Even if they're not trying to mislead you, they might answer in a general sense in order not to be pinned down. So they tell you that you have a 'very good chance'.
To you, 'very good chance' might mean 80%, because you're thinking about the high price of the programme. To them, 'very good chance' might mean 20%, because they're basing it on the excellent uplift over the 0% chance you have when entering the programme.
And some people just like to avoid conflict and tell people what they want to hear :(
And don't write off getting a new job. I started a new job a few months before my child was born, I was told that if I quit my job within the first year then I would have to refund the company for the parental leave I was given so soon in my time with them. I happily accepted that condition.
Echoing everyone else: a ceo who lies to get someone in the door? That person is going to fuck you (again) at the first available opportunity.
Keep good records. If they fire you over this, talk to an employment lawyer.
On the flip side, as a single person, I can definitely see how alot of benefits you can claim as a healthy, working career person are tied to having a family with kids. Our taxes subsidize day care, kid sports clubs and many other expensive things that are exclusive to kids. And, as long as you announce it with enough warning, your employer has to grant and handle your paternal leave so a lot of people use it as a way to claim the best weeks for vacation leaving us single people puzzling how to get the most out of summer.
Still, raising children is no cake walk and I would rather that parents have the support they need from the government than the whole situation affecting the children.
I’m all for paternity leave (I’m a self-employed father of two so had to create my own). But let’s start with moms, or at least a parental bucket that either parent can draw from.
You can. Many daycares take babies from six weeks onwards. I cannot imagine how it must feel as a parent to do that at six weeks, but plenty do.
We felt bad when our second kid started daycare at 18 months.
Or just take barely enough unpaid leave (or draw on other pools of paid leave, which are usually tiny anyway and may have been eaten into over various pregnancy-related issues and appointments already) to get back on their feet and head back in, leaving the baby with a cheap unlicensed daycare down the street (maybe fine, maybe, uh, not, but not like there are other options on a limited budget) or older relative or whoever :-/
True, it is unpaid，but the job protection is there.
I wish everyone could be able to do the same. Our children and families would be much better off for it.
I realize that it's impossible for everyone to have it, but we should at least aim for that. It would do so much for our society at-large.
I feel like the GP; truly, I feel blessed.
I think it helps strengthen the organization because any gaps in information flow become noticeable. The success of complex projects should not depend on a single individual.
I accept that less time at work may put me behind on the career track; and I expect that in the future, there will be a wage gap between parents and non-parents.
Of course, as as European, it is mind-boggling how little (none) paid leave parents get in the US. I also like how Spain is now giving fathers the same paternal leave as mothers maternal leave (16 weeks).
I do think that parental leave is a really interesting instrument to enable parents to find a way for a more equal-opportunity take on careers. My wife and I deliberately split our time off 50/50 (7 months + 7 months, all paid leave in DE). Besides spending time with my daughter, which was (and continous to be) a mind-altering experience, this allowed both of our careers to progress similarly. I highly recommend it.
Also there is this more graphical representation at the BBC .
 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parental_leave#By_country
 - https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20190615-parental-leave...
Fathers can also take paid paternity leave, usually you can split the leave with the mother however you want, and if you do you get a few months extra.
It's also typical that the father gets 3 weeks paid time off when a baby is born, to care for the family. I feel this was invaluable for me and my family.
I honestly find the US system inhumane, forcing mothers back into a job so soon, and a baby so young is just a tiny, vulnerable, little human. Too early to put them into daycare in my opinion, but I understand that many parents are forced to for financial reasons. The US healthcare really needs a big overhaul.
US can use the same system, factoring the cost of maternity leaves and the paternity leaves into the product prices or into reduced salaries. In the end, this is where money can be taken to cover.
As someone who plans on retiring (without children of my own) - yes, I consider saving money for my own retirement to be pretty important, but I also see having people around that I can buy stuff from in my retirement as pretty important, too. I'd really like to have the benefits of an advanced economy, so I think it's worth kicking in a bit to see to it that the next generation is cared for and educated.
(Of course, I have no idea how important having mom and dad around the first few weeks is vs. having access to good schools or something else entirely. Not my field. But I am saying that it is in my interest to contribute towards having an advanced, educated workforce that is... working during the years while I'm retired.)
* US: $10,224
* Germany: $5,728
* Austria: $5,440
The system in the US is just totally dysfunctional, and I know a complex issue. But in essence it's using a lot more money than comparable countries but the benefits don't even compare remotely.
I fully agree that USA has a major problem with the healthcare system, but that is a different matter.
The company I worked for was based out of the valley and had recently announced proudly that they offered paid leave.
I was excited, until HR got back to me to tell me I didn't qualify because I didn't live in CA. They offered that I could take leave without pay.
Even the companies who seem to embrace such policies, may not in all cases.
If this company wants to ride a wave of publicity and good will by telling the world they offer paid paternity leave, they should face the public scrutiny and blowback for such a disgracefully uneven application of said leave policy.
I'm against any type of incentive for newborns, because it all comes from the state, which means public money, which means taxes. I don't want to pay for other people's two-year vacation leave in which they play happy family while their employer is missing an employee and getting compensation with public money.
To me, if you can't or won't work, you must be replaced.
I don't think your view is inconsistent, necessarily, but it comes down to different views about the role of the state, whether new generations are important, etc.
Anyway, in some ways we should be doing what we can do reduce birthrates as much as possible before we destroy ourselves and our life support system, but on the other hand making it possible for people to engage in about the most basic function of being an animal without destroying their lives isn't all bad.
The state has been encouraging births as long as I remember. And while on one hand I can appreciate that everything is for the well being of newborns and a better society tomorrow, on the other all I notice are those who exploit this system to have years and years of paid leave and benefits.
It's just as libertarian as it gets, but if you can't feed them, don't make them. And I don't want my tax money to go into a safety net for people who made very poor life decisions.
The assumption that if we don't incentivize new births the conomy will collapse is just an assumption, because in many countries incentives are not in place, and you don't hear of economies collapsing and the elderly swarming the streets in search of food because people don't pop just the right amount of babies to reach the replacement rate.
And again, we cannot continue to grow indefinitely in a system of limited resources.
As for child benefit (the cash) I see why it grates tbh, but I think it's meant to help avoid kids being in abject poverty. Whether it works, well, I dunno.
I agree that we can't grow indefinitely, though.
Employer-wise, pregnancies are a loss. You have one skilled worker parked for 1,2, or 3 years. You have to hire and train from scratch a replacement. You risk, basically.
The economy might sort itself, but society has a much harder time of it.
Also, there's a class discrepancy in childbirth. In many affluent countries - as you've rightly pointed out - those who can live off what paltry state benefits exist (or even see the childbirth benefits boost their incomes) will - and will procreate abundantly, relying on the state. But quite frankly, those with limited access to contraception and the work-shy will procreate anyway, whether the state boosts their income or not.
Those with mortgages and careers and high IQ will not. Not that IQ is necessarily genetic, but it does tend to run in families.
The kinds of people who engage with HN are probably the kinds of people we should be encouraging INTO childbirth, not out of it - for the sake of society as well as for the sake of the economy.
And yes, there are limited resources. We need to deal with that. I don't think space travel or the next advance in GM is going to fix it all, by any stretch. We should do serious research into how to best fit the resource at hand, as a species.
But high-brow fear-mongering is the worst solution pragmatically. And parents with babies dying in the streets is the worst solution morally (and hygienically). You clearly have some intelligence, so don't settle for the false economy of unfeeling intellectualism, it's counterproductive. Find real solutions, not rhetoric.
I find all of this Neo-Malthusian. There's abundant data showing that the more educated is a population, the less kids per capita they produce. This does not mean that the uneducated or poor shouldn't reproduce.
> And parents with babies dying in the streets is the worst solution morally (and hygienically).
Oh come on, that's not what is going to happen if we lift the monthly baby cheque.
And no, street children don't exist, philanthropists will always come and save the day. The world is a just and fair place, and the only people hurting are the struggling entrepreneurs, under the pain and indignity of dealing with maternity / paternity regulations. Enjoy the warmth of your delusions.
.. you do realize you had guardians who took care of you, right?
Ohanian is hardly the only voice for this policy. And many who are in similar positions to his actively oppose it (if rather more circumspectly).
For another thing I don't think it is ethical. Specifically it is not fair towards people who do not have families. The loneliness we have to suffer is already punishment enough. We die earlier because we do not enjoy a happy life. Yes mothers should have a leave, because of simple necessity. But I don't think we should force people like me to compensate for fathers lack of will towards using their vacation days to care for their child.
Edit: of course medical emergencies are a different matter. I don't want to give the impression I want people to continue working if a dependant requires their care.
Besides, loners tend to die earlier anyways so we don't need so much Healthcare.