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Paid maternity leave yay or nay


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  #1  
July 21st, 2012, 01:44 AM
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This forum has been bit slow so I thought I'd post something. Would you like US to adopt European style maternity leave? I'll give you the Finnish example.

Maternity leave is in total for about 10 months starting at around week 35 of pregnancy. It is pays 70% of the normal pay. The employer does not have to stress over this as it is the social security that pays it. The employer has to hire someone else for the job but that is generally not considered a problem. I got into my current work place because I was covering somebody's maternity leave and right now if they've had the same person covering me that person has had about a year and a half of steady employment.

There is also the option for the father to take some of the leave but most of the time the mother takes most of it.

It is generally expected that the mother stays with the child for 1-3 years and then rejoins the workforce. The job will be held for up to 3 years. Those who stay home after the maternity leave runs out still get some money.
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  #2  
July 21st, 2012, 04:12 AM
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I think whether or not a business offers benefits of any kind is up to the business.
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  #3  
July 21st, 2012, 07:40 AM
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Besides the US healthcare sucking balls, maternity leave is crap too. We are waay behind on maternity leave compared to the European way. It would be great to adopt their view on families and leave.

I will admit that I did get 100% pay for 8 weeks and 1 week of 75% pay on my STD for maternity leave. I was thankful for that but it would have been nice to stay home for a year with pay, as well.
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  #4  
July 21st, 2012, 08:25 AM
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Europe is nice, but here in Canada we get 1 full year! With the option to split it with your partner. Mind you it's at 55% of pay, BUT many companies (and all provincial/federal gov. jobs) top up to over 90%!!! Also your job is protected for 3 years. Should you decide to stay home without pay after your 1 year Mat leave, you can take an additional 2 years without worrying if the position will be there when you return.

I am currently unemployed, so when we have children we are seriously looking at having my husband take advantage of his leave to be home as a family for at least a few months!!!

Having been trained and worked in childcare I know how important the first 3-5 years of a child's life are, and I am proud that our government recognizes the benefit of having the parents as their first and best teachers! That said we also have a bit of a daycare crisis and need more spaces, so allowing parents to stay home if they choose is a good solution for this problem!

I could not imagine being forced back to work after only a few weeks. Some women aren't even completely recovered by 6 weeks. I guess it shows where a country's priorities are... and in this case in the US, it doesn't seem like it's with the family.
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  #5  
July 21st, 2012, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchywannabe View Post
Europe is nice, but here in Canada we get 1 full year! With the option to split it with your partner. Mind you it's at 55% of pay, BUT many companies (and all provincial/federal gov. jobs) top up to over 90%!!!

This isn't completely true. In New Brunswick, the provincial government tops you up to 75% of your pay for the MATERNITY LEAVE portion only, which is the first 17 weeks of a 52-week leave. There is no top-up for the 35 weeks of Childcare Leave.


I'm strongly for better maternity leave policies. I think it's beneficial for both mom and baby.
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  #6  
July 21st, 2012, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tammyjh View Post
I think whether or not a business offers benefits of any kind is up to the business.
Does that mean that you're against the government funding it for everybody so every child can have the benefits of spending their first year at home with their parent?

Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchywannabe View Post
Europe is nice, but here in Canada we get 1 full year! With the option to split it with your partner. Mind you it's at 55% of pay, BUT many companies (and all provincial/federal gov. jobs) top up to over 90%!!! Also your job is protected for 3 years. Should you decide to stay home without pay after your 1 year Mat leave, you can take an additional 2 years without worrying if the position will be there when you return.
Unlike Canada though Finland pays money to every mother. I have a friend who moved to Canada a year and half ago and since she was like 7 months pregnant with zero work history she doesnt get a dime (or is that a toonie?). In here she would have gotten at least the minimum, that is peanuts but at least it's more than nothing.
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  #7  
July 21st, 2012, 12:21 PM
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You're correct Fluga, you have to work in Canada for a specific number of hours before you can claim for benefits for most programs. Sick leave, mat leave, unemployment.... and really I have 0 issue with that. If you aren't working prior to baby, then there is no missing income to supplement.


I do think it would be nice if US families (1 parent in a 2 parent home) were offered the opportunity to use their unemployment benefits post childbirth if they wanted. But with man states being Broke, they just really cannot afford to do it right now. I know for us, if we didn't have to worry about insurance, I'd never ever have to consider working. I could easily stay home.
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  #8  
July 21st, 2012, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Fluga View Post
Does that mean that you're against the government funding it for everybody so every child can have the benefits of spending their first year at home with their parent?
Yes. I don't feel its the taxpayers job to fund stay at home parents. One reason is because I don't want the govt. in my wallet any more than absolutely necessary and another, most states in this country cannot afford it.

If private businesses have the resources to offer a lengthy maternity leave, I think that's great.
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  #9  
July 21st, 2012, 02:59 PM
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I have a question. Where does the funding come from in order to get a full year paid maternity leave?
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  #10  
July 21st, 2012, 05:37 PM
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I'm all for paid maternity leave for atleast the first 9 months (would prefer a year). The benefits to both baby and mom not having to stress about it and being able to exclusivly breastfeed (if that is what mom wants), and to be with baby for that year is wonderful. It is really sad that many companies don't offer squat or only up to 6 weeks which isn't enough at all, not to mention that women really shouldn't return to work only 6 weeks postpartum, it puts a lot of stress and stain on the healing body. It typically takes 12 months for the body to completely heal.
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  #11  
July 21st, 2012, 08:20 PM
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I agree with Tammy.

It is a choice to have a child and individuals, not the gov't, should fund that choice. If women get paid to stay home with a child while a woman who chooses not to have a child/who can't havea child doesn't get paid to stay home for several months-a year that basically penalizes the childless woman.

Now if a company wants to provide paid leave as a possible benefit to their employees, I think it would be great. But I do not think the taxpayers need to provide more than we already are.
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  #12  
July 21st, 2012, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by *Jennifer* View Post
I have a question. Where does the funding come from in order to get a full year paid maternity leave?
If Social Security pays it like was stated in the OP, that's from the tax payers. So essentially, everybody even who doesn't work at that company ends up paying for it.
It sounds nice to say, and it would be really great to go an entire year receiving a paycheck even while you're not working, but it makes no business sense.
Anybody who's all in favor of this, have you bothered to think of it from a business point of view? What if you owned a company and let's say for argument's sake that Social Security didn't pick up the tab. Let's say you're obligated to provide a year of pay to someone who's not actually earning you any money for an entire year. How do you compensate for that? Pay everyone an overall lower wage but hope they're still willing to work for you? Raise prices to pass along to customers and hope it doesn't drive business away?

If Social Security is going to pay for it, oh goodie! What a great idea! Because there aren't already rumors of Social Security going broke in this country, so let's just start writing even more checks!

I guess you could say I'm against this. I think if a family makes it a priority for 1 parent to be at home for an entire year, they'll make it happen. I did it 4 times, and I'm not special.
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  #13  
July 21st, 2012, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by foxfire_ga79 View Post
If Social Security pays it like was stated in the OP, that's from the tax payers. So essentially, everybody even who doesn't work at that company ends up paying for it.
It sounds nice to say, and it would be really great to go an entire year receiving a paycheck even while you're not working, but it makes no business sense.
Anybody who's all in favor of this, have you bothered to think of it from a business point of view? What if you owned a company and let's say for argument's sake that Social Security didn't pick up the tab. Let's say you're obligated to provide a year of pay to someone who's not actually earning you any money for an entire year. How do you compensate for that? Pay everyone an overall lower wage but hope they're still willing to work for you? Raise prices to pass along to customers and hope it doesn't drive business away?

If Social Security is going to pay for it, oh goodie! What a great idea! Because there aren't already rumors of Social Security going broke in this country, so let's just start writing even more checks!

I guess you could say I'm against this. I think if a family makes it a priority for 1 parent to be at home for an entire year, they'll make it happen. I did it 4 times, and I'm not special.
I dont really understand what you mean with the business side of the view. It is given that social security will pay. There is no op out for them, a woman is pregnant, she fills the forms and starts getting the money.

I dont really see how a business would be able to (especially small businesses) to fund this and is it really in their benefit?

If one parent should just stay at home then what about 1 parent families? That would mean zero paychecks.
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  #14  
July 21st, 2012, 09:33 PM
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Not for it in the least, for all the reason everyone else smarter than myself has already stated...but I'll state again, in a non-smart way.

From a business standpoint, in this country, it makes NO sense. I trust those who think it does have never actually owned a business. Working for one doesn't count. Very few businesses in this country could pull something like this off and still manage being in the black. Few businesses actually remain in the black without it. What on god's green earth makes people think them shelling out MORE money, will change that.

From a tax payer point of view, it makes NO sense. We can't cover the assistance we're already offering for actual necessities in life, like oh I don't know, food, shelter, medical care. What honestly makes people think this country can just pull money out of it's ***. This country doesn't even have an *** to pull money out of anymore.

From a cynical *** point of view, don't people already ***** about others having kids to stay on the system? Wouldn't something like this simply promote that. Don't people think that at least SOME people would have kids for this benefit alone? I know some people think it, don't lie to me. People think others have kids just for food stamps and cash, this would be like the golden goose egg. You know the best cereal box prize ever. So much better than a piddly stipend each month(which incidentally you'd likely also receive, because a majority of families in this country would qualify for benefits at that point. so...bonus for you)

I an ideal world all mommies and all daddies would be able to spend as much time as possible with their precious progeny, never having to leave their sides, never wanting to leave their sides. Able to be there for every eye blink, poopy butt and accidental swear word lil junior got off that evil spongebob.
But we don't live in an ideal world. We certainly don't live in an ideal country. So come back to reality please.

Does it suck having to be separated from our little ones? Of course it does(at least to some extent, for all of us I'm quite sure). But that's a reality, especially here. At least if you need an income and have no other means than working to obtain one.

Why people think here should also be like there because there is so much better than here even though there really isn't all it's cracked up to be despite some aspects of there being much better than here, here still has some aspects far better than there. You can replace here and there with whatever the hell you want, it's usually applicable on many levels with lots of different topics.
The US isn't another country, and another country isn't the US. What can, and does work in some places, can't work everywhere.

Now, that all said.. if this country was not in a financial crisis, we wouldn't even be discussing it because such things would likely already be implemented. Our government makes enough bonehead decisions with the money in this country, including misusing it entirely. They don't need any shoves in that direction. But I do feel strongly, as far as some things are concerned, if it could be, it would be. Maybe not on all things, in fact I know not on all things, but on a lot of them(financially speaking most especially)

That's all coming from someone who's never had any paid maternity leave, has had to rely on the government and all you fine upstanding citizens on more occasions than she cares to count, has had to work multiple jobs and leave her precious wittles with other people in order to provide their basic needs, has been able to stay home after the birth of a child(again, not with pay), has been able to support her kiddos with no help at all from anyone, has been a SAHM and WAHM, and has owned a business with employees I actually had to pay a living wage and report to that uber cool big man we know as the US government.
That should lend credit(or is it merit?) to my opinion, and if not...
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  #15  
July 21st, 2012, 11:37 PM
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No thank you. My taxes are high enough. I stayed home with my son for 5 months and would have loved to stay home more. However, that was all the time I was allowed off before my position would be given to someone else. Would it have been nice to get paid during that time? Absolutely, but I don't think someone else should have to pay for my choice. It was my choice to have a child and my choice to stay home during that time. Heck, I also made it my choice to take off work about a month before I gave birth. Nobody else should need to pay for that.
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  #16  
July 22nd, 2012, 04:18 AM
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This country cares mostly for business and money. You go to certain countries that actually care about the people. Sad.
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  #17  
July 22nd, 2012, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Hey... Where's Perry? View Post
This country cares mostly for business and money. You go to certain countries that actually care about the people. Sad.
What I find most amazing is that the people in the country are so much against this. I've never thought of the paid maternity leave to be so the mom can just play but for the good of the child.
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  #18  
July 22nd, 2012, 05:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Frackel View Post
Not for it in the least, for all the reason everyone else smarter than myself has already stated...but I'll state again, in a non-smart way.

From a business standpoint, in this country, it makes NO sense. I trust those who think it does have never actually owned a business. Working for one doesn't count. Very few businesses in this country could pull something like this off and still manage being in the black. Few businesses actually remain in the black without it. What on god's green earth makes people think them shelling out MORE money, will change that.
I realize that this is hard for businesses, esp. small businesses which is why I clearly stated that in the model I described it is in no way the responsibility of the business. Now why you guys keep going back to having the business foot the bill I cant for the life of me comprehend.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Frackel View Post
From a tax payer point of view, it makes NO sense. We can't cover the assistance we're already offering for actual necessities in life, like oh I don't know, food, shelter, medical care. What honestly makes people think this country can just pull money out of it's ***. This country doesn't even have an *** to pull money out of anymore.
I think that possibly US suffers from spending their money badly. I just wonder sometimes how a small 5 million European country can pull of what US cant and add things like free healthcare, education etc.

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Originally Posted by Frackel View Post
From a cynical *** point of view, don't people already ***** about others having kids to stay on the system? Wouldn't something like this simply promote that. Don't people think that at least SOME people would have kids for this benefit alone? I know some people think it, don't lie to me. People think others have kids just for food stamps and cash, this would be like the golden goose egg. You know the best cereal box prize ever. So much better than a piddly stipend each month(which incidentally you'd likely also receive, because a majority of families in this country would qualify for benefits at that point. so...bonus for you)
If you have a child in Finland you get the money. If you have another child within 3 years of the first you get the full 10 months of maternity leave again without having to work in between. Now for some reason having great system like that does not encourage people to pop out babies like a factory. As a matter of fact Finland suffers from ageing population and birth rates are decreasing a lot. I dont think the reason is different cultures.

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Originally Posted by Frackel View Post
I an ideal world all mommies and all daddies would be able to spend as much time as possible with their precious progeny, never having to leave their sides, never wanting to leave their sides. Able to be there for every eye blink, poopy butt and accidental swear word lil junior got off that evil spongebob.
But we don't live in an ideal world. We certainly don't live in an ideal country. So come back to reality please.

Does it suck having to be separated from our little ones? Of course it does(at least to some extent, for all of us I'm quite sure). But that's a reality, especially here. At least if you need an income and have no other means than working to obtain one.
What I dont get though is what is so dramatically different about US, one of the richest countries that they cannot provide this for babies that so many other countries can.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frackel View Post
That's all coming from someone who's never had any paid maternity leave, has had to rely on the government and all you fine upstanding citizens on more occasions than she cares to count, has had to work multiple jobs and leave her precious wittles with other people in order to provide their basic needs, has been able to stay home after the birth of a child(again, not with pay), has been able to support her kiddos with no help at all from anyone, has been a SAHM and WAHM, and has owned a business with employees I actually had to pay a living wage and report to that uber cool big man we know as the US government.
That should lend credit(or is it merit?) to my opinion, and if not...
So you have taken assistance but the assistance that would have allowed you to stay at home with your child for say 6 months would have been too much?

I realize that we're never going to see eye to eye on this. I am just continually so baffled over this. I have tried to understand your point of view but it just completely escapes me.
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  #19  
July 22nd, 2012, 06:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Fluga View Post
What I find most amazing is that the people in the country are so much against this. I've never thought of the paid maternity leave to be so the mom can just play but for the good of the child.
I am grateful to live in the USA but it is not the best country in the world. I don't think there is a "best" country, each has good and bad, but the USA is just so adamant about taxes, money, business, and politics. Where do the people come into play? Where does the emphasis of family come into play? Where does happiness and health come into play? Overheard one of the docs talking about a patient and within the first sentence was, "He didn't have health insurance."
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  #20  
July 22nd, 2012, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ~Kris~ View Post
I agree with Tammy.

It is a choice to have a child and individuals, not the gov't, should fund that choice. If women get paid to stay home with a child while a woman who chooses not to have a child/who can't havea child doesn't get paid to stay home for several months-a year that basically penalizes the childless woman.

Now if a company wants to provide paid leave as a possible benefit to their employees, I think it would be great. But I do not think the taxpayers need to provide more than we already are.
It is not penalizing women who don't or can't have children. It is there to help women recover from birth (which typically takes up to 12 months to completely heal the womb, etc) and to let babies be with their mothers. That is important. The US pushes women to be back into the work force just weeks after giving birth. Many times they are still bleeding from lochia, which is not good to work while that is still going (typically 4-8 weeks). The AAP says a baby should be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life and then continue to BF for atleast 1 year, while the CDC and WHO says to continue to atleast 2 years. Well it's really hard to do that when you're working, especially if you work full time. Mothers really need to be allowed the time to heal, to breastfeed, and to be with their babies. If you don't want to have children, that is fine, you don't get any mother/child benefits from that choice. Childless people don't get child taxes back either, or extra time off for a sick child or get off early for teach parent meetings. That's just part of life and I don't see that as penalizing someone who made a choice not to have kids or can't have kids. I see it as fair giving into each circumstance (in this case the choice to have children).

ETA: I have childless friends where I live, mainly from choice, and they don't care that new moms get (I think it's like 9 months here) paid leave to be with their babies. They actually think that's nice.
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Last edited by HappyHippy; July 22nd, 2012 at 07:21 AM.
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