The US is one of the worst countries for parental leave — and it’s especially bad for new dads.
“At the policy level, we do not provide a single day of paid paternity leave,” says Simon Isaacs, cofounder of Fatherly, an online parenting resource for men. “Within individual companies, it is estimated that only 10 to 15% of US employers provide paid paternity leave. This means a lot of new dads are not able to take time to bond with their babies and be at home with their families.”
The good news is, the conversation around paternity leave is “louder than ever,” says Isaacs. “At the federal and state level, a number of measures are being adopted that will hopefully result in a nation-wide solution. We are seeing companies realise the importance of offering longer paid leave options to their workforce.”
Fatherly decided to find the companies leading the race and spotlight those organisations for its new list of the Best Places To Work For New Dads.
“These employers are showing that offering new dads more paid time off can be a real competitive advantage — particularly as it relates to recruiting and retaining top talent,” he says.
Google — which recently landed the No. 1 spot on Business Insider’s ranking of the Best Companies To Work For In America — leads Fatherly’s list thanks to its lengthy paternity leave (12 weeks, or 18 if you are the primary caregiver); flexibility policies; and onsite childcare at the Googleplex.
In addition, it has an impressive policy that in the event of your untimely death, your spouse will receive 50% of your salary for 10 years and all stock options, which vest immediately — and your kids will get $US1,000 a month until they turn 19 (or 23 if they’re full-time students). “Ensuring that your family is taken care of is something on the mind of every new dad,” says Isaacs.
Here’s the full list:
“Facebook, which ranked No. 2, has the most impressive paternity leave policy of any company on the list with 17 weeks,” says Isaacs. “Additionally, new parents receive $US4,000 in ‘baby cash’ and subsidized childcare. It has a good work-from-home and flextime policy and, of course, it offers perks like nap rooms and free dry cleaning.”
Rounding out the top 3 is Bank of America, which offers 12 weeks of paid leave plus another 14 weeks of unpaid leave for dads (if you can swing it). “In addition to leave, we liked their TelaDoc service, which lets you talk to a doctor by phone or video chat,” he says.
Last year, millennials accounted for 80% of new parents. “Millennial dads are more engaged than ever in childcare and household responsibilities — and an ever-rising share of them believe that companies should offer paid leave,” says Isaacs.
“Paternity leave (which is not ‘time off’) is important for a number of reasons. There is an increasing body of evidence behind the importance of father-child bonding beginning in the first few weeks,” he adds. “With more than ever couples sharing responsibilities at home, paternity leave is also important to support your wife or spouse.”
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