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What Working Mother magazine won’t tell you: Global gender gap

November 10, 2007 | Advertising,Economics,Ethics,Family,Health,Journalism,Politics,PR,Work,Working Mother

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If things are going so well for American working mothers, why did the United States fall from 23rd place to 31st place on the Global Gender Report?

Posted by Becky @ 10:26 am | 2 Comments  

What Working Mother magazine won’t tell you: Work/life balance not so important to companies

November 8, 2007 | Benefits,Ethics,Family,PR,Work,Working Mother

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In an August 2007 survey, 89 percent of employees polled said work/life balance programs are important. Employers? Not so much. About half of the human-resources professionals polled considered them important, according to the 2007 Monster Work/Life Balance Survey.

The online survey included 506 HR professionals and 830 employees. While the survey is not scientific, the results illustrate a wide gap between what employees and employers consider important, despite all the public relations surrounding work/life balance. Maybe it’s a bit like the gap between what Corporate Voices for Working Families says it considers important in theory and what the U.S. Chamber of Commerce shows what it considers important in practice.

Posted by Becky @ 4:07 pm | Comments  

Are you free for lunch Nov. 15?

November 5, 2007 | Audience participation,Blogland games,Books,Ethics,Family,Parenting,PR,Work,Working Mother

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Here’s what you do.

  • 1) Register for the teleconference. (It’s free.)
  • 2) Leave a comment or e-mail me so I can add you to the list.
  • 3) Call on Nov. 15.
  • 4) Blog your reaction, and send me the link. (If you don’t have a blog, you can guest post here.)
  • 5) Win the book! (I’ll draw a name at random.)

Join us, won’t you?

Corporate Voices for Working Families says it focuses on “Five Pillars of Work,” 1) Afterschool Care and Early Childhood Education, 2) Youth Transitions, 3) Mature Workforce, 4) Flexibility and 5) Lower Wage Work.

Members of Corporate Voices are companies affiliated with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce through their local chambers. The Chamber, which ranks first in lobbying spending ($72.7 million in 2006), holds this position on labor and workforce:

Oppose expanding workplace laws and craft alternatives when necessary. Aggressively oppose union-backed proposals to increase the minimum wage and abolish secret ballot elections in favor of card check majorities for union recognition. Oppose any efforts to expand Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave or mandate paid sick leave. Block attempts to increase penalties for criminal violations of OSHA. Continue to expose unreasonable union organization tactics such as salting and corporate campaigns. Protect the use of binding arbitration in employment. Aggressively advocate for pro-employer provisions in priority international labor and employment policy proposals. Continue to push for a reasonable application of the revised Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility guidelines.

The U.S. Chamber believes NCLB is one of the critical tools needed to transform U.S. education so that all students graduate academically prepared for college, citizenship, and the 21st century workplace.

  • The Chamber supported the presidential veto of SCHIP (State Children’s Health Insurance Program).
  • The Chamber opposes a bill that would give employees seven paid sick days each year. More here.

What will they say about you? Tune in and find out.

Posted by Becky @ 7:16 pm | 14 Comments  

What Working Mother magazine and WSJ’s Work & Family columnist won’t tell you

October 15, 2007 | Advertising,Blogging,Ethics,Family,Journalism,MSM,PR,Work,Working Mother

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I mentioned that TIME published an article questioning the Working Mother magazine “100 best” list, but I didn’t get around to adding that WSJ.com questioned the list too. Sara Schaefer Muñoz of The Juggle posted “Do Family-Friendly Companies Live Up to Their Claim?” on Sept. 25, 2007.

Nine days later, The Wall Street Journal‘s Work & Family columnist Sue Shellenbarger wrote “What Makes a Company A Great Place to Work Today” (on the same page as the “soft” benefits article) on Oct. 4, 2007.

Shellenbarger (who was named one of America’s “25 Most Influential Working Mothers” by Working Mother magazine in 1997, according to a lecture bio) started with, “Tis the season for workplace rankings, with ‘best-workplace’ lists sprouting everywhere this fall,” and she mentioned Working Mother magazine’s list, as well as Business Week‘s “Best Places to Launch a Career” list. Then she broke it into “what’s hot” and “what’s not” categories.

Hot

Flexibility. She mentioned AstraZeneca, where “more than two-thirds of the 30 employees in a medical-resources group are regular users of alternative setups tailored to their needs.” (That’s 20 employees.) Which is odd because Working Mother said 90 percent of employees at the main office — almost 2,700 employees — worked some sort of flexible schedule. In any case, neither Working Mother nor Shellenbarger offered more details.

She wrote that in Abbott‘s office in Ohio, “75 percent of 108 employees are on flexible work setups and the rest have day-to-day flexibility.” That’s 81 employees.

Broader programs. She wrote that Pfizer and The Phoenix Cos. added paid paternity leave. Working Mother did not mention this about Phoenix on its list, but it did spell it out for Pfizer, which is actually impressive, relatively speaking, with 35 weeks of maternity leave (15 fully paid) for mothers and 26 weeks of paid leave for fathers and adoptive parents (six weeks fully paid). Even so, it’s still a far cry from what Pfizer employees in Norway and Sweden get.

Vacation time. She mentioned that at Xerox (not a Working Mother “100 best” company), employees can buy an extra vacation week.

Wait. That’s hot?

According to the Center for Economic Policy and Research‘s May 2007 “No-Vacation Nation” report, the United States is the only advanced economy in the world that does not guarantee its workers paid leave.

Here’s a chart from that report.

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Xerox has employees in every country listed on the chart, meaning its employees in those countries get up to seven weeks paid leave (vacation and holidays) — guaranteed by law. Xerox employees in the United States buy vacation days.

Whew. Somebody open a window. That’s smokin’ hot.

This really deserves its own post, but since she mentioned Shellenbarger by name, I’ll put it here. Former Working Mother magazine editor Lisa Benenson gave publicity tips to corporate benefits managers at a Diversity Roundtable, called “A Journalist’s Perspective: Making the Grade Matters,” in 2002. (Benenson is now editor-in-chief of Hallmark Magazine, giving lessons on the TODAY show about “what flowers say.”)

What does it take to get a Sue Shellenbarger to laud your company in The Wall Street Journal … More importantly, why does it matter?

She referred to journalists who cover work/life issues as “some of your most important advocates.”

The end result of making any of the “Best Of” lists is a bountiful supply of positive news coverage that reflects well on the company, its leadership and employees. The companies that make a top 10 list get incredible publicity. There is nothing like it. There are thousands of media hits all across the country. You just get huge press coverage and recognition for the good work that you’re doing.

Benenson encouraged participants to “seriously consider subjecting their operations to the close scrutiny of journalistic investigation.”

Journalistic investigation? By whom?

Posted by Becky @ 5:23 pm | 2 Comments  

What Working Mother magazine won’t tell you: Employers offer ‘soft’ benefits

October 12, 2007 | Family,Parenting,PR,Working Mother

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Here’s a nice little primer for understanding the Working Mother magazine “100 best” list. The Wall Street Journal published an article, “Employers Offer Help On College Admissions,” on Oct. 4, 2007, saying that companies offer seminars and advice about the admissions process. That’s great, but here’s the point.

Such programs, which are offered free to employees, come at a time when health-care premiums are rising and employers are cutting back many benefits. To compensate, companies are adding more “soft” benefits — from group discounts on gym memberships to pet insurance — that cost them very little, if anything. … As companies increase their employees’ out-of-pocket costs, they are looking for “touchy-feely” benefits that can soften the blow, [according to a benefits expert].

Posted by Becky @ 8:21 am | 2 Comments  

Working Mother “100 best” company is R-O-C-K-in-the-USA

October 1, 2007 | Advertising,Family,PR,Work,Working Mother

Or you might say … it “loves me like a rock.”

Who do …

Who do you think you’re fooling?

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Magpie Musing got it in the mail. Go see what she has to say about it.

Sorry. Can’t leave the “rock” song thing alone. Then there’s Life Is a Rock (But the Radio Rolled Me). If you forgot the tune, check this out. Then … sing away. (Just pretend it rhymes and has clever, witty lines to break things up. Or add your own.) Whee!

Abbott Accenture AEP Allstate Arnold & Porter AstraZeneca Bank of America Baptist Health South Florida Bayer BlueCross BlueShield Bon Secours Richmond Health System Booz Allen Hamilton Bristol-Myers Squibb Bronson Capital One Cardinal Health Carlson Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Children’s Memorial Hospital Chrysler Cisco Systems Citi CJW Medical Center Colgate-Palmolive Cornell University Covington & Burling Credit Suisse Daszkal Bolton Deloitte Discovery Communications Dow Chemical Dow Corning DuPont Eli Lilly Ernst & Young FannieMae First Horizon National First National Bank of Omaha Ford Motor Co. Genentech General Electric General Mills GlaxoSmithKline GoldmanSachs Grant Thornton Harvard University Hewlett-Packard IBM Inova Health Systems Intel Johnson & Johnson JPMorgan Chase Katten Muchin Rosenman KPMG Kraft Foods Lehman Brothers Marriott International Massachusetts General Hospital MassMutual The McGraw-Hill Companies McKinsey & Company Merck Mercy Health System Merrill Lynch MetLife Microsoft Morgan Stanley Northern Michigan Regional Health System Northern Trust Northwestern Memorial Healthcare Novartis Patagonia Pearson Pfizer Phoenix Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman Pitt County Memorial Hospital PNC PricewaterhouseCoopers Principal Financial Prudential Financial Rodale RSM McGladrey SC Johnson Sanofi-Aventis Shering-Plough Scripps Health Texas Instruments Timberland TriHealth Turner Broadcasting UBS University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Verizon Wireless VCU Health System Wachovia West Virginia University Hospitals Wyeth Yale-New Haven Hospital

Hat tip: Chewy

Posted by Becky @ 7:37 pm | Comments  

What Working Mother magazine won’t tell you: Abbott

Advertising,Ethics,Family,Journalism,Media,Media literacy,Parenting,PR,Working Mother

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Abbott

Show me the $$$

Abbott spent $2,260,000 for lobbying in 2006, $880,000 of which went to outside lobbying firms. The rest was spent on in-house lobbyists. Abbott gave $566,474 to federal candidates in the 2005/2006 election period through its political action committee.

Chairman and CEO Miles White has given $94,940 to political candidates and political action committees since 2000. Of that, $10,000 went to the New American Leadership Fund, $5,000 to the Keep Our Mission PAC, which gave $1,090,828 to candidates and other PACs in the last election cycle, and $500 to the Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America, which gave $123,343 in 2006 to federal candidates.

Who benefits?

Abbott, which recorded $22.5 billion in sales in 2006, has 65,000 employees in more than 100 facilities around the world, including offices in Norway and Sweden. Working Mother “loves” the family leave Abbott offers American employees:

Salaried mothers get six weeks of paid and six weeks unpaid maternity leave. Hourly employees get six weeks of partially paid and six weeks unpaid maternity leave. Fathers can take two weeks of paid paternity leave.

Abbott employees who live in Norway or Sweden get at least a year of paid family leave (mothers and fathers must share the leave) with the option of extending it to two or even three years at reduced pay.

Abbott had 150 employees (of 65,000 total) participate in lactation support for its Mothers at Work program, which “helps our employees manage their breastfeeding schedule at while at work” with lactation consultants, lactation rooms, a “breastfeeding kit” and online information. The kit says Abbott has partnered with Working Mother magazine to “raise awareness” and “encourage implementation of workplace lactation programs.”

What do they say when they speak for working mothers?

Abbott also has teamed up with Working Mother and its Moms in Action blog, Corporate Voices for Working Families and the International Formula Council, an international association of manufacturers and marketers of infant formula (individual members are not listed), to speak for working mothers in the public-policy arena. For example:

… some states are considering proposals to restrict the information new mothers receive about infant feeding options.

That’s where the formula council, which collaborates with Abbott and Working Mother, comes in. An Abbott publication called “Ensuring Optimal Infant Nutrition: A Shared Responsibility,” says that “92 percent of mothers approve of the distribution of infant formula samples,” according to an August 2002 survey conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin & Associates with Wirthlin Worldwide. It doesn’t, however, provide details of the survey. How many mothers participated in the survey? Ten? Twenty? One hundred? It’s hard to say. The survey is not available online.

If you’d like to hear what they say on behalf of working mothers, they will hold a teleconference on public policy and advocacy on Nov. 15.

They mean business

Think making the “100 best” list is just a nice pat on the back? Think again. Not only do companies send out press releases about it, promote it to prospective employees and display it in their annual reports, they testify before Congress about it.

A representative of Corporate Voices for Working Families said this before the House Committee on Education and Labor Workforce Protections Subcommittee on June 21, 2007:

Our commitment to a culture of flexibility and to helping working families has not gone unnoticed. KPMG has earned a spot on Working Mother Media’s List of 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers ten times; we have made the Companies that Care Honor Roll four times, and this past year, Fortune Magazine named KPMG one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2007. — Barbara Wankoff, KPMG (Corporate Voices for Working Families partner***)

Lactation support around the world

In July 2006, the Philippines Department of Health issued regulations to ban the marketing of infant formula for babies younger than 2. The World Health Organization estimates 16,000 babies a year die in the Philippines because of a decline in breastfeeding. Filipino mothers even say their pediatricians prescribe infant formula for their babies. The Pharmaceutical and Health Care Association of the Philippines (“100 best” members include Abbott, AstraZeneca, Bayer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, Sanofi-Aventis, Schering-Plough and Wyeth) sued the government to stop the new rules. The Philippines Supreme Court would not issue an injunction to stop the new rules from going into effect. The the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wrote to the president in August, complaining about the rule and issuing a threat:

If regulations are susceptible to amendment without due process, a country’s reputation as a stable and viable destination for investment is at risk. — the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in a letter to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, August 2006

Four days later, the Supreme Court issued an injunction against the new rules.

In February 2007, U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food Jean Ziegler issued a statement by the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, saying infant-formula advertisements in the Philippines ” … manipulate data emanating from the U.N. specialized agencies, such as WHO and UNICEF,” as well as the Philippine Health Department, “with the sole purpose to protect the milk companies’ huge profits, regardless of the best interest of Filipino mothers and children.”

As late as June 2007, both sides were still in court. The World Health Organization and UNICEF issued a statement in August 2007, condemning misleading advertisements. (Abbott’s infant formulas include Alimentum Advance, Isomil, Similac 2, Similac Advance and other Similac products.)

Abbott recorded in its 2006 annual report “pediatric nutritionals” in the United States of $1,128,000,000 in 2006, $1,097,000,000 in 2005 and $1,146,000,000 in 2004. International sales were $899,000 in 2006, $698,000 in 2005 and $598,000 in 2004.

The decrease in sales of U.S. pediatric nutritionals in 2005 was primarily due to overall infant nutritionals non-WIC category decline and competitive share loss. International Pediatric Nutritionals sales increases were due primarily to volume growth in developing countries.

Gross profit margins were 56.3 percent of net sales in 2006.

In the U.S., states receive price rebates from manufacturers of infant formula under the federally subsidized Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children. There are also rebate programs for pharmaceutical products. These rebate programs continue to have a negative effect on the gross profit margins of the Nutritional and Pharmaceutical Products segments. In addition, pricing pressures unfavorably impacted the gross profit margins for the Nutritional Products segment in 2006, 2005 and 2004.

Healing the world 

Abbott’s product Kaletra is a vital drug for treatment of HIV/AIDS, but the company charges inflated prices for the drug in many developing countries.

From Abbott’s 2006 annual report:

Increased sales volume of HUMIRA and increased volume and price for Kaletra and Depakote favorably impacted U.S. Specialty sales.

Abbott recorded U.S. Specialty (pharmaceutical) sales of $3,505,000,000 in 2006, U.S. Primary Care sales of $2,505,000,000 in 2006 and international pharmaceutical sales of $5,157,000,000 in 2006.

In April 2007, an organization called USA for Innovation (its Web site started in April and went down in August) started a public-relations campaign against Thailand, sending out press releases, placing full-page advertisements in The Wall Street Journal, The Nation (editorial statement on the ad) and the Bangkok Post. Everyone, transcribing press releases, quoted USA for Innovation and its spokesperson, but nobody seemed to know anything about the organization. Nobody asked. Turns out it’s a 501(c)4 non-profit organization, run by Ken Adelman as president/director, Nancie Marzulla (president of Defenders of Property Rights; more info here) as secretary/director and Abner Mason (founder of the AIDS Repsonsibility Project) as treasurer/director, whose main interest is protecting intellectual property rights. Among other things, Adelman is a senior counselor to Edelman PR firm.

Former President Bill Clinton announced in May 2007 that his foundation negotiated price cuts for AIDS drugs and endorsed Thailand and Brazil’s decisions to American pharmaceutical company patents, saying their prices were exorbitant.

Abbott has been almost alone in its hard-line position here over what I consider to be a life and death matter. — Former President Bill Clinton, May 2007

::::::::Psst! Bill, your wife has taken $58,100 since 2002 from the pharmaceutical industry. She’s taken $146,000 so far in the 2008 presidential campaign. Speaking of presidential campaigns, you took $71,500 from the pharmaceutical industry in 1996. But, hey. I guess you’re all about Oprah and Giving these days, right?::::::::

Abbott planned to introduce new antibiotic, painkiller, high-blood-pressure and AIDS drugs to Thailand, but it withdrew them in retaliation for Thailand’s decision to break patents and buy cheaper generic drugs for patients. Abbott has since reached agreements with Thailand and Brazil to sell its drugs for $1,000 a year per patient.

***In addition to Abbott and KPMG, other “100 best” Corporate Voices for Working Families partners include:
Accenture
Allstate Insurance Company
AstraZeneca
Bank of America
Booz Allen Hamilton
CitiGroup
Deloitte & Touche, LLP
Discovery Communications
Eli Lilly Company
Ernst & Young
GlaxoSmithKline
Goldman, Sachs & Co.
HP
IBM
Johnson & Johnson
JP Morgan Chase
Lehman Brothers
Marriott International, Inc.
MassMutual
Merck & Company, Inc.
Metropolitan Life Insurance Co.
Morgan Stanley
Phoenix Companies
PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
Texas Instruments
Wachovia

Posted by Becky @ 4:18 pm | 2 Comments  

Will you let Working Mother magazine speak for you?

September 30, 2007 | Advertising,Family,Parenting,PR,Work,Working Mother

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Will you let Working Mother, Abbott, and two organizations of corporations speak to U.S. policymakers for you?

Working Mother, Abbott, Corporate Voices for Working Familes and the International Formula Council will hold a teleconference on Nov. 15 to discuss public policy, advocacy and working mothers.

An example of an issue important to them:

… some states are considering proposals to restrict the information new mothers receive about infant feeding options.

An Abbott publication called “Ensuring Optimal Infant Nutrition: A Shared Responsibility,” says that “92 percent of mothers approve of the distribution of infant formula samples,” according to an August 2002 survey conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin & Associates with Wirthlin Worldwide. It doesn’t, however, provide details of the survey. How many mothers participated in the survey? Ten? Twenty? One hundred? We have no idea, and the survey is not available online. What they intend to do with this survey is to say, hey, why all the fuss about advertising for infant formula? They want to fight laws that ban or restrict their ability to sell formula.

Does this top your list of important issues as a working mother? Or do you have other ideas about what’s important to you and your family? If you’d like to hear what these groups plan to say to policymakers on your behalf, why not register and participate in the teleconference?

Mark your calendar: Nov. 15, 2007, noon-1 p.m., Raise Your Voice: Advocating for Better Working Family Policy

Posted by Becky @ 3:22 pm | 2 Comments  

This is for Arwen … cheers!

September 27, 2007 | Ethics,Family,Journalism,Parenting,PR,Work,Working Mother

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From the Working Mother October 2007 issue, “You’re Cut Off,” p. 104

One day last spring, Lorie Baker walked into her home office just outside Annapolis, Md., and logged on to her computer to catch up on a bit of work. As the mother of twin daughters and a director in the advisory practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers (“I’m a type A person, and I work in a type A company”), she struggles to fit in everything she feels she needs to get done. So she’d often log in to the work system on her days off, stealing whatever moments she could.

On this occasion, as she stared at her computer screen, something unexpected happened. An official-looking pop-up appeared, beginning with this simple declaration: “It’s the weekend.” What happened next was nothing short of an aha experience.

“I actually asked myself, ‘What am I doing on my PC? Can’t this wait until Monday?'” Lorie recalls. She turned the computer off, gathered her girls — Allison and Amanda, 7 — and headed straight for the swing set at the park. “It really was a stark wake-up call that the weekends are so valuable,” she says.

Sure. It could happen.

[pause]

Pah-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!

But seriously. Do these “programs” elicit such a breathless, dewy-eyed response in real life? Really?

Posted by Becky @ 5:57 pm | 2 Comments  

What Working Mother magazine won’t tell you, part 1

Ethics,Family,Journalism,PR,Work,Working Mother

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The Work, Family, and Equity Index, published by the Institute for Health and Social Policy at McGill University and the Project on Global Working Families. The report studied and compared 177 countries, finding that the United States does well regarding an equitable right to work and guaranteeing time-and-a-half for overtime. The United States, however, lags behind all high-income countries and even many medium- and low-income countries, especially regarding 1) leave around childbearing, 2) breastfeeding support, 3) work hours and 4) leave for illness and family care.

Of 173 countries studied for this topic, 169 countries offer guaranteed leave with income to women in connection with childbirth; 98 of these countries offer 14 or more weeks paid leave. Although in a number of countries many women work in the informal sector, where these government guarantees do not always apply, the United States guarantees no paid leave for mothers in any segment of the work force, leaving it in the company of only three other nations: Liberia, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland.

  • Fathers in 66 countries get paid paternity leave or have a right to paid parental leave; 31 of these countries offer 14 or more weeks of paid leave. The United States guarantees fathers neither paid paternity nor paid parental leave.
  • At least 107 countries protect working women’s right to breastfeed; in at least 73 of these the breaks are paid. The United States does not guarantee the right to breastfeed.
  • At least 137 countries mandate paid annual leave; 121 countries guarantee two weeks or more each year. The United States does not.
  • At least 134 countries have laws that fix the maximum length of the workweek. The United States does not have a maximum length of the workweek or a limit on mandatory overtime per week.
  • While only 28 countries have restrictions or prohibitions on night work, 50 countries have government-mandated evening and night wage premiums. The United States neither restricts nor guarantees wage premiums for night work.
  • At least 126 countries require employers to provide a mandatory day of rest each week. The United States does not.
  • At least 145 countries provide paid sick days for short- or long-term illnesses, with 136 providing a week or more annually. More than 81 countries provide sickness benefits for at least 26 weeks or until recovery. The United States provides only unpaid leave for serious illnesses through the FMLA, which does not cover all workers.
  • At least 49 countries guarantee leave for major family events such as marriage or funerals; in 40 of these countries, leave for one or both of these family events is paid.

According to its 2004 report:

  • The United States is tied with Ecuador and Suriname for 39th place regarding enrollment in early childhood care and education for 3- to 5-year-olds. Almost all European countries perform better and a range of developing and transitioning countries — despite being poorer — had higher enrollment rates than the United States.
  • Employer-sponsored childcare in the United States is available to only one in eight employees.

It is legal in most states for employers to discriminate against American mothers.

While illegal, American women deal with pregnancy discrimination every day. (Just in case you don’t think it happens, here’s a lawsuit filed by an employee who was fired in December 2005, two weeks after telling her employer she was pregnant.)

The only way for American women to get a chance at guaranteed affordable, high-quality child care is to join the military.

Women still earn less than men do, and mothers earn less than anyone.

Many of the “benefits” and “perks” offered by the “100 best” companies are completely voluntary and certainly not permanent. Time to slash 2,000 jobs or cut the budget? Let’s cut [insert family-friendly benefit].

While many of the companies offer six weeks of paid maternity leave here or a lactation room there, not one of the companies measures up to what’s required of employers in much of the rest of the world. While Working Mother compares the “100 best” to other U.S. companies (click on “Download a snapshot of how the 100 Best compare to all the rest”), it fails to mention that many of the “100 best” operate in Canada, Norway and Sweden — for example — and, by law, must provide employees in those countries with some of the most generous and comprehensive benefits in the world. That’s not required in the United States, though. Instead, some of the things Working Mother cites as cool “benefits” American employees might get, depending where they work:

  • Yoga or exercise classes
  • Meditation classes
  • Knitting classes
  • Surfing lessons
  • Massage therapy
  • Stress-management counseling or stress seminars
  • Financial-planning advice and/or tax software
  • Online support groups
  • A diaper bag
  • Event-planning service
  • First-aid classes
  • A parenting kit
  • A pop-up window that tells employees who fire up their work computers on Saturday or Sunday that, “It’s the weekend.”
Posted by Becky @ 4:22 pm | 4 Comments  


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