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TOPIC: U.S. Maternity Leave vs. Other Countries

U.S. Maternity Leave vs. Other Countries 01 May 2016 16:42 #9640

  • Cassandra.B
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As one of the most developed countries in the world, it is a wonder why the U.S. is not one of the 178 countries that offers paid leave for maternity leave. Other countries that do not financially support the mother on maternity leave are Papua New Guinea, Liberia, Swaziland, and Lesotho. These countries are not as developed as the United States. The length of maternity leave in the United States is 12 weeks. The length of maternity leave in Germany is 14 months with 65% of wages paid during that time. In Malta, 100% of wages are paid during a maternity leave of 14 weeks. This allows for the mother to not only spend time with her child, but also to breastfeed the child (which has been shown to lead to a longer life expectancy). The paid leave is necessary especially for single parents, who would have no other source of income during the maternity leave. It is unfortunate that the United States’ mindset of business and moneymaking as the priority has surpassed in importance of bringing new life into the world and raising a child fruitfully.
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U.S. Maternity Leave vs. Other Countries 08 May 2016 22:27 #9740

  • brianna.m
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This is a very important topic. The US has a serious amount of catching up to do compared to the rest of the developed world. Under the Family Medical Leave Act, workers are allowed 12 weeks of leave, however, that leave is unpaid. There seems to be a huge implication that workers in the US are not encouraged to have families or be able to support them. This is an interesting case when you take into account staunchly pro-life advocates in right-winged politics and how they are disproportionately un-supportive of programs which encourage paid leave and better financial support for mothers and families. As if to say, "You are forced to have your child, but we won't help you in supporting them". Vacations and sick leave are also often unpaid, further adding to the problem of encouraging work-horse labor for Americans.
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