What a Parent-Friendly Workplace Looks Like


Like many systemic issues in the U.S., the question of how parent-friendly workplaces fall along classed, raced, and gendered lines.

Unlike most other wealthy nations, the U.S. does not have federally mandated paid parental leave or medical leave, deferring instead to the discretion of companies and private workplaces, as well as states, to decide these policies.

This means that wealthy corporations, where white workers are overrepresented in high-level positions, have made strides toward creating workplaces that appeal to parents.

Low-wage jobs, which are disproportionately held by Black workers and workers of color, are much less likely to implement parent-friendly policies, further stratifying already unequal workplaces.

10 Elements Integral to a Parent-Friendly Workplace

Anti-discrimination Policies for Pregnant People

Anti-discrimination policies protecting pregnant workers have been in place since 1978, when the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) was passed as an amendment to the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

Fertility and Adoption Benefits

Fertility and adoption benefits—which include in vitro fertilization (IVF) coverage, adoption reimbursements, and surrogacy benefits—are important.

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