In the United States, there are many policies that are seen as women’s issues and this puts them at a lower priority for those in power. The issue that I want to highlight is maternity/paternity leave. This is defined as: “The Period when a woman can legally be absent from working the weeks before and after she has a baby”(“Cambridge Dictionaries online,” n.d.). Women’s bodies go through a lot of changes when they have a baby including hormonal, physical and psychological (Dunkel Schetter, 2011). These can be exasperated by financial burdens due to lack of pay while on leave, social expectations for the parents to both return to work and the cost of returning to work. I would also like to touch on the kind of wording that is used in current policies that only speaks to gender binary people and excludes those who do not identify that way. First we will look at the policies and what they state, then we will move on to what needs to be changed and why. Doing this will allow us to learn what the rules are and where they need to be tweaked to try and make child bearing not only an equal burden on both parents but also protect women from being discriminated against for having the ability to bear children.
When you look at the national policy for the United States it fits the definition by Cambridge Dictionaries and many jobs do not offer more time than legally mandated. According to the Family and Medical Leave Act(FMLA), employers must offer up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave if any of the following happen: incapacity due to pregnancy, prenatal medical care or child birth; if you need to care for your child after birth, or placement for adoption or foster care, to care for your spouse, son...
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...l as lifting some financial burden. We no longer live in a world that only allows people to identify as the biological gender they were born as, we have many different genders as well as those who do not identify as any gender. Inclusion for these people is important and changing wording to be inclusive to all identities of people including non-binary identifying people is very important to having an equal playing field for all. Many people worry about what they will do after they are unable to work. Social security credits for those who take maternity/paternity leave so that these worries will at least be partially alleviated for those who stay home and childcare that is at least low cost if not fully subsidizes by the government. This issue is not at the same place it was when the policy was created and it needs to be updated to reflect the world we live in today.
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