Family Values @ Work

Luckily, my employer was very kind

Luckily, my employer was very kind

January 15, 2015

Dear President Obama,

My name is Shannon and I live in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. When I started my job as a sign language interpreter for the Two Rivers Public School District (TRPSD) I had no idea that I would be bringing another baby into the world. I had just got off the phone with my new boss telling me that I had a part time job! I couldn’t wait to start in the fall.

Minutes later the phone rang with my from my doctor’s office telling me the results of my blood work. I had been exhausted for a few weeks and my husband told me to go in. I thought I just had low iron counts again. Wow, was I wrong. I was pregnant with our third child! I hadn’t even started my new job yet and I knew I was going to have to take a leave of absence when my daughter was born. I didn’t really know what to do or how to tell my new employer. Luckily, my employer was very kind and had me fill out the paper work for the FMLA. I didn’t have any sick time to use because I was new and only part-time.

I am thankful that I was able to have time to heal myself and bond with my daughter. I had major trouble after she was born. My employer needed me to start full time now, what a lucky break. However, my doctor was not ok with that because I had an infection, two herniated discs, and a severely broken tail bone from a difficult delivery. Taking more FMLA leave meant I was able to work with my doctor and my employer.

I have been employed with TRPDS for 10 years now.

I appreciate all that you and your administration have done to advocate for working families who need new public policy – such as the Healthy Families Act and the FAMILY Act in order to do their best on the job, while providing critical caregiving for family members.

I urge you to continue to use your office to build public awareness and support for these important policy solutions.


Two Rivers, WI



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