Family Values @ Work

Report on the Importance of Newborn Family Leave

February 10, 2010

Supporters of the work of Family Values @ Work will be interested to read this review of the research on the importance of family leave for the parents of newborns. To celebrate the 5th anniversary of the state paid family leave program in California, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation recently released a report called “Newborn Family Leave: Effects on Children, Parents, and Business.” Among the report’s findings:

• Newborn family leave has significant positive effects on the health of young children, rates of breastfeeding, and fathers’ involvement with their babies.
• The most important determinants of whether parents take leave are if the leave is paid or job-protected.
• Lower income workers and part-time workers are less likely to have access to either paid or unpaid leave.
• Businesses report no major problems in complying with the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and effects on business appear to be modest.  Some studies suggest that leave policies can benefit companies through increased employee retention and job satisfaction.

You can read the report at the Packard Foundation website.



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